The Poisoned City

The Poisoned City

Flint's Water and the American Urban Tragedy

Anna Clark

Despite the particular vulnerability of children, there was no federal mandate for schools and child-care centers to test for lead in their water. Forty-four states did not require it either. Part of the problem was that if testing were mandatory, what would happen when lead was found, as it was in about half the public schools in Newark in 2016? 70 Do you install all-new pipes, fountains, and faucets, and, if so, who should pay for it? Do you shut off the school’s water and ask the community to donate bottled water? When Camden, New Jersey, found high levels of lead in the water at its schools—New Jersey is one of six states that do require testing—the fountains were turned off. The district went on to spend about $ 100,000 a year to supply the schools with water coolers.

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