What If It Were You?
In this time of incredible abundance, have you ever thought about what it would be like if even one of your most basic needs was removed? Take water for example. Without clean water running through your home’s plumbing, not only can you not stay hydrated at will, you also lose simple conveniences of good hygiene and health like brushing your teeth, bathing, cooking, and cleaning.
Worse yet, what if the water running through your pipes still ran but slowly began to turn toxic, and you had no idea?
This is the reality that residents of Flint, Michigan are dealing with. Without warning, the water that flowed from their faucets slowly began to turn toxic. Residents continued to unknowingly provide themselves and their children with water that contained increasingly dangerous levels of lead, until the permanent effects of long term severe lead poisoning and constant contact with lead infused water were physically manifested in the people, young and old, of Flint…
Root Concepts co-founders Jeff Daverman and Jon Vander Pol both grew up in Grand Rapids, less than two hours from Flint, so when the gravity of the Flint water crisis became clear it hit close to the roots. Having lived in Arizona for the past two decades as well, one gets an acute awareness of the need for precious, clean water. Clean water is a basic human right! We are graphic designers with big printers who feel compelled to do what we can, so here it is…
We feel passionately about helping the people of Flint in three ways:
– To supply residents of Flint with resources to carry on the fight for dignity and justice, and as well to do our part to deliver clean water to the residents of Flint so they may retain their health and well being. We share common humanity, and when some of us suffer, we all suffer.
– To continue to call attention to and raise awareness of the injustice that has happened to the town of Flint. The utter indifference to the lives of fellow human beings by those responsible is appalling and must be thoroughly corrected.
– Through the combination of a donation and a symbol, we hope to connect in a humanizing way the people of Flint and individuals from all over who stand in solidarity with them!
‘Stand With Flint’ Sticker Campaign:
Lend your voice to help the people of Flint!
We’ve created 3 sticker designs that give you a voice to tell the world that you Stand With Flint! 100% of the proceeds from your donations will go to the help residents who continue to struggle with lead in their water systems.
Click on the links below to make your donation and get your sticker:
Add your voice to those who want to see Flint get back on its feet and hold those responsible accountable. By helping to continue to raise awareness of the failures of the Michigan State government and the sub par treatment of their citizens, a growing chorus of voices do make a difference!
We will be heading to Flint in July to personally deliver water and any additional funds raised from this sticker campaign to show our support, and offer aid to those who will inevitably still need it.
We’re connecting with organizations like the Flint Democracy Defense League and Water You Fighting For, we will continue to pursue and report on what the most effective use of our funds and combined energy will be. Our campaign will coincide with World Water Day on March 22, Earth Day on April 22, and on through Independence Day in hopes of providing support and outreach addressing Flint’s still unresolved pain.
Nobody deserves to be treated like this. It’s everyone’s right, by law, to have safe, clean water to drink. It’s assumed that the water coming out of your faucets complies to the specifications laid out in this act – not so for the people of Flint.
Your help to continue raising awareness with this campaign is important, because even now the plight of Flint is being played down to a level that is barely seen as a breach of law. This needs to change, and your help with social media and stickers will have an impact!
Learn More About The Flint Water Crisis
A Quick Backstory
If you haven’t heard, In 2014, the town of Flint, MI, a town that was hit hard when the economy tanked, saw the need to rethink their already meager budget. Decisions were made on the state government level to switch Flint’s water supply from Detroit’s water supply to the a river with a questionable sanitation history, the Flint River.
All was well for a time, but shortly after, residents were reporting degradation in the quality of water. In only 18 months, numerous children in the community had been officially diagnosed with severe lead poisoning. Water tests revealed that lead levels in 40% of homes in Flint were well above the EPA’s action level, leaving the water source in the town to be described as nothing other than toxic.
The flint river had corroded the pipes of a majority of the town, doing irreversible damage to the water infrastructure of Flint, and in the fall of 2015, when the water source was switched back to the original Detroit supply, the damage was permanent.
The Cover Up
Being in a role of leadership and being a leader are two very separate things. One asks the person to ask “What more can I gain for myself?”, while the other asks a very different question of, “What can I do to uplift those who I lead?”.
The difference between the outcomes of two leaders who each choose to lead asking one of those questions is palpable, but when a real conflict arises that puts their followers in harm’s way, not only is the outcome different, it can even become tragic as it has in Flint.
When pride gets in the way of decisions about the public health of those you lead, people get hurt. This is the path that Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder chose to take over the course of the last two year period, and in concert with his executive approved staff, he chose to value money and pride over the lives of the people he was tasked with leading.
Not only that, but when residents of Flint began to push back against their government concerning their own safety, the decision that Snyder and his appointed officials made was to pretend like everything was fine. They told the poisoned people of flint to simply “Relax” and continue drinking the water.
Test results showed differently, as Flint’s water continued to become more toxic each day that passed, and it wasn’t until the issue reached national attention that any kind of response come from Snyder. And when it did, still no help came, all the people were given was more pushback and more toxic water. Can you imagine the loss of hope that you’d feel? No help from the government that is in charge of protecting your personal, inalienable human right of clean water, as you slowly realize that you’ve been drinking water poisoned by lead for an entire year.
Where Flint Stands
What the people of Flint now deal with is hard to imagine. This is an emergency! The damage of health that comes from drinking water that is well above the EPA allowed lead level is severe. Symptoms from MayoClinic.org are awful and permanent.
If that’s not enough damage, it’s important still to realize the effect that corroded pipes has on the infrastructure of homes and the town as a whole. There’s no guarantee that Flint’s water pipes can be repaired with a quick fix. The pipes will, in all likelihood, continue to leach lead for years to come, rendering the entire town’s water infrastructure useless. The cost to replace the pipes in the town? Realistically, close to $100 million.
The Water Crisis Takes Center Stage
Earlier this week, the democratic debate took place, by no accident, in Flint. The two frontrunner democratic nominees Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders keyed in on the issues of the poison water and the failure of government on the state level in Michigan, as well as their shared desire to see Michigan’s Governor Rick Snyder resign from his position.
While referring to Michigan’s “Rainy Day Fund” to be used for emergencies, Clinton artfully crafted her desire to see that money be spent as soon as possible to help the residents of Flint.
“It is raining lead in Flint, and the state is derelict in not coming forward with the money that is required.”-Hillary Clinton
Bernie, who has taken a strong emotional stance against the atrocities that have unfolded in Flint addressed a Flint native:
“You are paying 3x more for poisoned water [in Flint], than I’m paying in Burlington, VT for clean water.”-Bernie Sanders
More great resources to consider…
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