November 11, 2021
A court has approved a settlement of more than $600 million — the majority of which will be paid by the state of Michigan — in a milestone in the years-long battle over contaminated water in Flint, one of the nation’s worst public health disasters.
The $626 million deal to settle most lawsuits filed by Flint residents is one of the largest in the state’s history, according to District Judge Judith Levy’s ruling. Children in Flint who were exposed to dangerous lead-contaminated drinking water are set to benefit in particular from the decision.
Residents of the predominantly Black city of around 95,000 people complained of discolored and foul-smelling water and skin rashes after bathing, but their concerns were largely ignored. Some critics have since labeled the disaster an example of environmental racism.
“This is a historic and momentous day for the residents of Flint, who will finally begin to see justice served,” said Ted Leopold, one of the lead attorneys in the litigation, the Associated Press reported.
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