October 03, 2017

Residents and business owners in Flint, Michigan, have launched a consolidated proposed class action in Michigan federal court against the state's governor, other public officials and private contractors over the city’s water crisis, saying that they weren’t treated the same as white residents in a neighboring county.

The consolidated 156-page complaint, filed on Sept. 29, combines 10 separate class actions and more than 50 personal injury lawsuits into one case and alleges that Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, other public officials and several engineering firms created a public health crisis by exposing Flint residents to lead-tainted water, and worsened the problem by failing to correct it and then lying about it to cover-up their misconduct.

The litigation, like other similar suits, arises out of lead contamination in Flint caused by a decision to switch the city’s drinking water from Detroit’s system to the Flint River to save money without the necessary corrosion control.

The city’s residents say that that the creation of an interim water delivery plan in 2013 favored the predominately white residents of Genesee County, and discriminated against the largely African-American community in Flint.

“It is time for Governor Snyder, the state of Michigan and private contractors to take responsibility for the devastating health impacts that negligent, race-based decisions have had on the people of Flint,” Ted Leopold of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, co-lead class counsel, said in a statement. “We’re hopeful that bringing these cases together will finally lead to justice for the people of Flint and provide them the resources needed to start rebuilding their lives.”

The full article can be viewed here.