press release


News from Progress Michigan 

February 17, 2017

Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574,

‘Systematic Racism’ Contributed to Flint Water Crisis, Commission Says

Report from Snyder-appointed commission says racism responsible for slow response

MICHIGAN — Gov. Rick Snyder’s own Civil Rights Commission has released a scathing report showing how “systematic racism” was a major factor in the Republican-controlled state’s response to the Flint Water Crisis.

“This report reinforces the truth that Flint residents and activists have been saying from the very beginning: the Flint Water Crisis would not have happened in a majority white city and the state’s slow response and attempts to discredit activists were rooted in systematic racism,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “This entire crisis began because of the Republicans’ emergency manager law, which led to the rapid disenfranchisement of people of color in communities around the state. The Republican-controlled legislature, which is overwhelmingly white, has harbored elected officials with racist views for years and allowed for the situation to drag out for years before taking any action. And the steps they did take have had little impact in the community, which continues to struggle for access to clean water years into this crisis. It’s time Michigan’s elected officials at every level approached their duty to govern responsibly through a racial equity lens that seeks to dismantle the systems, policies and attitudes that led to this crisis and other racially-motivated problems in our state. We’ll be reminding them of that duty loudly and often until we have the people and policies in place to create equitable, sustainable communities and an economy that works for everyone.”

According to the 135-page report: “The people of Flint have been subjected to unprecedented harm and hardship, much of it caused by structural and systemic discrimination and racism that have corroded your city, your institutions, and your water pipes, for generations.” 


1 Comment

  1. It is astonishing that a commission had to do an investigative 135 page report to reveal what everybody that has eyes and ears knew from the very beginning. Absolutely amazing.

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