Congress members meet with Flint residents over water crisis
FLINT, Mich. (WJBK) - Twenty-five members of Congress were in Flint Friday night, seeing first-hand the continuing struggle with water that isn't safe for drinking, cooking or bathing.
Flint native Congressman Dan Kildee (D) led the group from Washington, D.C. for a speak-out event at Emmanuel Baptist Church.
They assured residents that the nation has not forgotten about them and leaders are working to solve the problem.
"They gave us the idea that they were here to support us and we were working as a team," said Cheryl Walker said. "So I was confident with that. I want to see the actions behind the words."
House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi empathized with the people who are suffering.
"What we know, from what they told us and from what we heard today is that what is happening in Flint challenges the conscience of our nation," Pelosi said.
Kildee talked about his hometown of Flint.
"This is where I raised my children, every weekend when I leave Washington, I come home to Flint," he said.
But that doesn't erase the frustration of residents.
"Because I replaced the pipes in the front of my house from the curb to my house in 2012," said Shawanda Pelletier. "What about me? because basically what I'm being told that was a waste of money because those pipes will now be no good because bad water went through them."
Pelletier feels the 25 members of congressman couldn't answer of the questions people had.
"My other question was what else is in the water," Pelletier said. "And nobody answered that question. Several people asked that question and we did not get that answered. Is there anything else in the water and who's checking?"
The politicians did a tour of the city which was closed off to the media, a spokesperson says for security reasons.
Mayor Karen Weaver says the city of Flint needs all the help it can get.
"We can't take the fight on by ourselves," Weaver said. "We shouldn't have to take this fight on by ourselves and we need everybody standing with us being a voice for Flint."
The two-year mark is near for the city of Flint and this water crisis.
"It's been challenging in that they're attacking our dignity," Walker said. "We're going to get water, a basic need. We're going to get water, so here we're looking to clean ourselves and we can't. We're looking to go to the Fossil to get a drink, but we can't.
"We're told for years it was okay, but now we know it's not. so who do you trust."
The residents who spoke to FOX 2 say they're at a total loss. They came to the city and invested in their homes which they can no longer sell. At this point, they say they're stuck.