May 12, 2016 (FLINT) — Mayor Karen Weaver today unveiled a new television, radio and digital media ad campaign to launch Friday urging Flint residents to flush the water in their homes for a total of 10 minutes a day to remove lead particles and coat the pipes to protect their homes.
The City of Flint is working with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and State of Michigan on the pipe-flushing program. While the city continues to move forward on plans to remove all the lead-tainted pipes leading to Flint homes through her FAST Start initiative, Weaver said the flushing program is another necessary step to fix the city’s broken water system.
“Running the water in your bathtub for five minutes and then doing the same at your kitchen sink after turning off the filter should help reduce lead levels in our water,” Mayor Weaver said. “While the only long-term solution is to remove every lead and galvanized steel pipe leading to Flint homes, flushing the pipes is an important intermediate step.”
A 30-second television ad will begin airing Friday on Flint stations. A 60-second radio ad also is running. Both urge Flint residents to “Take a Turn” to improve the city’s lead-tainted pipes by running their bathtub and kitchen faucets every day for two weeks. Both ads were produced by Brogan & Partners, based in Birmingham, Mich. The TV ad will also be distributed to Flint residents via Facebook and YouTube.
The new TV ad was shown today during a news conference held at Flint City Hall. Gov. Rick Snyder was also on hand and spoke about his support of the flushing campaign and the Mayor’s FAST Start plan. Governor Snyder announced the state will pay for water used by Flint residents during the month of May to encourage them to participate in the flushing effort to help improve the water quality. Mayor Weaver urged the city’s ministers and community leaders to spread the word about the importance of residents in every household flushing the pipes to help restore the water system.
Kathleen Falk, regional director of Region V for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services also attended the news conference. She and Gov. Snyder both spoke about how Flint residents will benefit from the recent Medicaid expansion. They said 15,000 more Flint residents are now eligible to sign up for Medicaid coverage being paid for by the state and federal governments. Coverage became available this week to children up to age 21 and pregnant women who were served by the Flint water system since April 2014, and who have income levels up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level. Coverage is retroactive to March 1. In addition, up to 30,000 Flint residents currently covered by Medicaid are eligible for additional services.
“This is an important step toward ensuring that our most vulnerable residents – pregnant women, children and youths – get the kind of medical attention they need to make sure any health problems they’re suffering from exposure to Flint’s lead-tainted water are treated,” Mayor Weaver said.
“Flint residents continue to suffer because of decisions imposed on them by mistakes from outsiders, under the oversight of the state and federal governments. While we’re pleased to announce these additional measures today, we still need state and federal funds to address health issues, economic issues, and to replace all the lead-tainted pipes in the city.”
The TV ad can be seen at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O64JedJkxJE&feature=youtu.be
The radio ad can be heard here: