$15M from US going to Flint for water crisis health response

(File photo WEYI/WSMH)

FLINT, Mich. (AP) — Federal officials say $15 million is going to provide health and social services for people who have had or are at risk for lead exposure stemming from Flint water crisis.

The funding announced Friday is previously authorized under a law providing $170 million to deal with drinking water safety issues. The $15 million goes to the Genesee County Health Department's Healthy Start Program.

Officials say the money aims to help residents with health issues linked to exposure to the water supply. Lead exposure can cause miscarriage, developmental delays and other problems.

Flint switched from the Detroit-area's system to the Flint River in 2014 to save money. The river water wasn't properly treated to reduce corrosion, causing lead to leach from old pipes and fixtures into drinking water.

Congressman Dan Kildee released the following statement:

“This significant investment is welcome news for my hometown which is still recovering from the water crisis. Healthy Start funding will go a long way toward helping Flint families and children mitigate the effects of lead poisoning by expanding access to health care and child development services. I am proud to have championed these resources through Congress last year and see this money awarded to Flint. Today’s announcement is an important reminder that the water crisis is not over. While these federal resources are important, it is also incumbent on the state of Michigan to do more to help aid in Flint’s recovery.”

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