Contaminated water in Benton Harbor destroys families

Rev. Pinkney stands outside Whirlpool in Benton Harbor, MI. The giant corporation dominates the town.


BENTON HARBOR, MI — Let the truth be told. This was a very bad year for the residents of Benton Harbor. Whirlpool Corporation has completely taken over the city of Benton Harbor, which includes the elected officials and the city manager, who cannot make any decisions without the approval of Whirlpool. They are working with Whirlpool against the people to remove the Black residents, completely out of the city.

First, on the water crisis. We have tested 40 homes in Benton Harbor and 33 of those homes had lead levels extremely high, above 25 ppb. The normal is 15ppb. We even had two homes with over 100 ppb. One school tested 640ppb, over 40 times above the normal level.

Elevated levels of lead cause serious health problems, especially for pregnant women and young children. Lead in the drinking water is primarily from materials that have been dumped in the water by factories and by industrial wastewater runoff. Also lead can enter drinking water when pipes solder, or fixtures containing lead corrode, releasing the lead into the water.

The water testing included testing for Microbial contaminants, such as salts and metal—which was found in the water. Pesticide and herbicides, which come from a variety of sources such as agriculture and other uses, was also found in the water. The number one cause of contaminants in the water are products of factories or industrial processes.

We must teach our community all about water and how important clean water really is. Water is a human right. Clean water is a moral issue—you cannot live without clean water. Lead in your water, Microbial, Inorganic, Pesticides, Herbicides, Radioactive and Organic Chemical in your water will shorten your life.

We must stand up to Whirlpool Corporation and elected officials to demand clean water for our children, our family and our community. We must confront the enemy or the enemy will continue to destroy us. No more bad water.

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