Good evening, everyone. I am Karen Weaver, and I am the mayor of the great city of Flint, Michigan. Flint is a community of 100,000 strong, hard-working people, living in the birthplace of General Motors, and the place where the great sit-down strike led to the creation of the United Auto Workers.
Flint is also a city in crisis. Five years ago, our Republican state government used a Michigan law to take over control of the city. In 2014, the state made a fateful mistake, switching our water source to a polluted river to save a handful of dollars – causing lead contamination to leach into our drinking water, poisoning a whole community, and leading to health impacts that may haunt our children for generations.
The problems in Flint are not over. The water is still not safe to drink or cook with from the tap. Our infrastructure is broken, leaking, and rusting away. Our local economy, already down when the water crisis struck, struggles to rebound. And there are many more Flints across the country where environmental issues are hurting our kids and families.
I am still sad to report that the help we need from our federal government to start to rebuild our drinking water infrastructure still sits blocked in the Republican-controlled U.S. Congress, despite the mighty efforts of our Michigan representatives, Congressman Dan Kildee, Senator Debbie Stabenow, and Senator Gary Peters.
I am a voice for Flint, calling out for help.
Do you know who has also heard the call from Flint? Hillary Clinton!
She came to Flint when the water crisis hit. She joined with our community groups, and our civic leaders, and our churches. Hillary said that, “every single child should have the opportunity to live up to his or her God-given potential.”
She said, “I will fight for you. I will stand with you, every step of the way. I will not for one minute forget about you, or forget about your children. I will do everything I can to help you get back up, and to help you get your strength and resilience flowing through Flint again.”
After her visit in February of this year, her staff then came back to Flint, rolled up their sleeves, and got to work. With direct help from Hillary Clinton’s team, we have set up the Flint WaterWorks program that is now putting the young adults of Flint into new jobs rebuilding their own community. Hillary’s wonderful daughter, Chelsea, even came to Flint to bring people together to start this work and to create new opportunities for our families.
And then Hillary Clinton came back to Flint, again, a month later. Hillary called out to say that lead poisoning, broken infrastructure, and struggling cities are a national crisis, not just a Flint crisis. Hillary called for getting rid of the poisons in our water, our soils, our old lead-based paint, and our cities. She made a commitment that, when she is President, she will work for a lead-free America.
That is why I’m with Her!
So join with Flint, and all the other Flints out there in America to get behind Hillary Clinton, to raise our voices for Hillary Clinton, and make her the next President of the United States.
God bless Flint and God bless America.https://www.demconvention.com/speeches/flint-mayor-karen-weaver/