WASHINGTON, D.C. – CBC Chairman G. K. Butterfield (D-NC), Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), and Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-MI) issued the following response to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) regarding the Republican spending bill:
“The Congressional Black Caucus was early to call for immediate funding to assist in the recovery of the Flint, Michigan water crisis, and we are deeply concerned that such assistance is not included in the Republican’s bill to fund the government,” said CBC Chairman Butterfield. “Clean drinking water is a basic human right. Yet, since April 2014, tens of thousands of American children and families in Flint have been drinking and bathing in poisonous water –thousands of families have been harmed—and it is simply outrageous to think that Republicans have moved in a direction to not find a remedy for those who are most affected. Members of the CBC have been outspoken regarding Flint, we have traveled to the city where we met with families to hear their concerns, and we stand united in this effort to call upon our Republican colleagues to help these families recover. Flint still lacks safe water, and as elected officials, we all have a responsibility to ensure the safety of our constituents.”
[pullquote]“Flint’s citizens have suffered unacceptable damage and continue to suffer because Republicans are more interested in providing lip service than they are resources,” said Congressman Conyers. “Water is a basic human right and it’s shameful that many Flint residents are stuck with using water bottles to bathe, cook, drink and care for themselves and their families; some not having access to any clean water at all because they are homebound or cannot afford transportation. [/pullquote]
With funding for Flint omitted from the continuing resolution, it’s clear: minority and low-income communities are not even the slightest priority for our Republican-led Congress. We must ensure Flint’s water is made fully safe, its children and families made whole, and justice is served to those who stripped Flint’s citizens of the right to protect themselves.”
“The people of Flint, Michigan have suffered enough,” said Congresswoman Lawrence. “A continuing resolution (CR) that fails to address the man-made crisis in Flint demonstrates our lack of commitment to helping the 100,000 citizens that have been poisoned by lead in their drinking water supply. I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to do the right thing and include funding for the residents of Flint.”
Today, the CBC delivered a letter to House Speaker Ryan and Senate Majority Leader McConnell further addressing concerns for the lack of funding for the City of Flint.
# # #
Since its establishment in 1971, Members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) have joined together to empower America’s neglected citizens and address their legislative concerns. For more than 40 years, the CBC has consistently been the voice for people of color and vulnerable communities in Congress and has been committed to utilizing the full Constitutional power and statutory authority of the United States government to ensure that all U.S. citizens have an opportunity to achieve the American Dream. To learn more about the Congressional Black Caucus, visit http://cbc-butterfield.house.gov.