As celebrities, corporations, and concerned citizens from around the country send bottled water and aid to Flint, Michigan to help the beleaguered community deal with the lead crisis, some residents are being shut out from receiving clean water.
Despite the state’s insistence that Flint residents do not an ID to receive bottled water and filters, many are being turned away because they cannot produce government identification.
Last week, Nayyirah Shariff posted an Instagram video of a sign requiring IDs for residents seeking bottled water.
On the clip, Shariff explains, “So, we are outside the Flint fire station … and this is what’s outside of the fire station.”
Later, Shariff posted another video showing a woman being turned away because she forgot to bring her ID to a water distribution center manned by the National Guard.
— nayyirah shariff (@nayyirahshariff) January 22, 2016
Around 1,000 undocumented immigrants live in Flint and some are remaining in the shadows, fearing deportation. Additionally, just like in other economically challenged community, many native-born residents don’t have government IDs either.
Thankfully, churches and other groups are handing out clean water to residents without requiring IDs.
If you're a resident of Flint w/o ID, you can get water at Grace Emmanuel Baptist Church, 3502 Lapeer Rd on 2/6/16 pic.twitter.com/Jn24BQWd3F
— Wealthy McDollas (@huegolden) January 28, 2016
However, given what Flint residents are up against, it’s sad something as small as a state-issued ID could stand between them and non-toxic water.