Intentional Disinvestment: EPA Launches Civil Rights Probe of Water Crisis in Jackson, Mississippi

Democracy Now! Oct 24, 2022

The Environmental Protection Agency is launching a civil rights investigation into whether the state of Mississippi discriminated against the majority-Black capital of Jackson when it refused to use federal funds to address the city’s dangerous water crisis. Mississippi has received federal funds to address drinking water needs since 1996 but distributed funds to Jackson just three times over this 26-year span. “For years, Black communities have faced intentional disinvestment” in water infrastructure, says Abre’ Conner of the NAACP, which filed the complaint that led to the investigation. Conner says that through the creation of the EPA’s new civil rights office, the government now has “an opportunity to make right the wrongs that have happened to Black communities and to other historically disadvantaged communities for years.”

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