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.”

Show me your papers to get bottled water. But we didn't need ID to get poisoned. #FlinWaterCrisis

A video posted by nayyirah shariff (@vmilitant) on

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.

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.

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.

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  • This is a total outrage. I don’t care if a people living in Flint has an ID or not. That person should receive water. It doesn’t matter if a person is an undocumented human being or not. That person deserves to receive water too. I am happy that Clutch is mentioning information about Sister Nayyirah Shariff. She is a Sister who is a well known activist standing up for the people of Flint, Michigan for years. I have heard about her from articles too. Also, it is great that many religious places and other people are giving people water as well regardless if someone has an ID or not. A human being receiving water is a human right. The suffering of the people of Flint is heartbreaking. Also, it is important to note that we are a strong people. We want infrastructure to develop and we desire a revolutionary change where the oligarchs via emergency manages won’t dominate the lives of the people. In the final analysis, the democratic rights of the people supersede the interests of select corporate interests. That’s real. We express solidarity with the residents of Flint and we demand criminal prosecutions of all parties involved in the poisoning of the water supply.

    • Eyes Wide Shut

      Honestly, I am surprised that the governor is still even breathing. What an arrogant piece of work. Clearly the federal, state and city governments have completely failed the people. While the U.S. spends BILLIONS of dollars on yet another bombing of a country, the citizens of Detroit are suffering under 3rd world conditions and deprived of a necessity of survival: clean drinking water. This is a disgrace on every level.

      What’s even more insulting is how long these supposed repairs will take. I think what the teachers did (showcasing how awful the schools are) was a step in the right direction: put this news on the international circuit/social media and shame da heck out of these politicians.

      Honestly, I am not sure what will be the next step in this tragedy. Revolution perhaps????

    • You have made powerful points Sister.

      I’m shocked that the Governor including other local and state officials aren’t arrested. Any other person (like a regular person) who poisoned a lake or a river, would be arrested by the authorities ASAP. The Governor including other state and local people involved in this tragedy shouldn’t be immune from arrest and prosecution. Little children will be damaged for life by this man-made poisoning of the water supply of Flint, Michigan. That is straight up crime against humanity. There is this hypocrisy (as you have accurately stated) where billions of dollars are spent overseas on bombing people in other nations (we know about the torture programs, etc. that have executed by Western intelligence agencies) while there is a refusal by some to spent billions of dollars now to rebuild the infrastructure of Flint.

      We have an overt national emergency. The teachers using their protests in Detroit certainly made the public aware about how serious the problem is. There should be a revolutionary change. All people should have access to clean, drinking water.

    • shybookworm

      No one may get arrested but you can bet your a** that there will be a class action suit or some kind of multi-million dollar settlement as there should be.City officials deserve to lose all their money and earthly possessions.

    • No doubt. Suits will come about.

    • WhyNot?

      It’s ethnic cleansing and it’s deliberate and orchestrated so that’s why no one is paying..well, except the residents of Flint…the establishment is finding ever more creative ways to get rid of negroes in major cities across the country.

    • No Doubt. You’re right.

  • Mary Burrell

    This is wrong to deny human beings something that is necessary for survival. Having an I.D. this is inhumane.

  • Mary Burrell

    It’s amazing how people take something basic like water for granted, Always remember the people of Flint.

  • Mary Burrell

    This morning I was watching Melissa Harris-Perry on MSNBC and the Flint water crisis was being discussed and one of the panelists who is Latina mentioned that many undocumented workers who don’t speak English are afraid to open their doors to receive the emergency water brought to them and don’t know there are places they can go to get help. They fear deportation. There is help for them.don’t like how these articles are reported on these sites. So there must be an interpreter somewhere to tell these people there is help available to them.

    • Melissa Harris-Perry has shown stories on the Flint water crisis including other MSNBC hosts. Water is a precious human right. As you have said, interpreters should come into Flint to help out undocumented immigrants. If a person lacks compassion for their neighbor, then has person is morally blind and spiritually anemic.

    • Mary Burrell

      That is true Brother Truth.

    • Thank you Sister Mary Burrell.

  • CayaK

    This is horrible and crazy. In one of the richest countries!