After two years of waiting for state and city officials to remedy the Flint water crisis during which 1,700 residents were impacted, Flint Rising was forged out of the need to build community organizing infrastructure and community leadership, vital components to the fight for justice. Flint Rising is a voice for impacted residents who have seen significant decreases in quality of life and still have no timeline for when improvements will be made. They listen to and speak directly with residents to publicize their narrative and experiences.
The Flint Rising Coalition has three main goals that they demand be met immediately by representatives in the Michigan Legislature. These include the replacement of all damaged lead service lines, employing local Flint workers; a 100 percent water bill reimbursement from April 2014 until the water is deemed safe; and health and education services for children, adults, and seniors in the community. At the moment, Flint officials believe that the crisis will not be resolved until 2020, which means that residents will be living on bottled water for the next three years - a solution that Flint Rising asserts is not a solution at all.
Flint Rising plays a necessary role in advocating for people within the community who are still experiencing rashes, hair loss, and other health problems linked to water quality. These residents are demanding that state legislators craft a budget that will rebuild the city’s infrastructure. They continue to put pressure on Governor Snyder and his administration to ameliorate the situation quickly. Flint Rising also helps community leaders get organized, reach out to other organizations and resources, and create a movement that will ultimately ensure environmental health and justice for Flint residents. At the federal level, Flint Rising has appealed to the US House of Representatives to pass a short-term federal funding bill that includes assistance for Flint. While the US Senate voted in favor of passing bills to provide funding for the Flint water crisis, representatives in the U.S. House excluded it their bills. Flint Rising continues to advocate for the passage of a bill to fund efforts in Flint to finally restore a sense of stability and safety to impacted residents.
Policy Development and Advocacy