President Barack Obama announced plans to visit Flint, Michigan in his response to a plaintive letter from an 8-year-old girl about her hometown’s devastating water crisis, according to a White House statement.
The president will make his first trip next week to Flint in an effort to reassure residents that “their plight hasn’t been forgotten,” writes The Associated Press. The visit comes months after it was determined that the city’s drinking water was tainted with lead, notes the report:
The White House announced the trip by posting online a letter the president wrote to Flint resident Amariyanna “Mari” Copeny. The 8-year-old activist known as “Little Miss Flint” wrote to Obama last month to tell him she was coming to Washington to push lawmakers to do more for the city:
The White House
April 24, 2016
Dear Mari: Thank you for writing to me. You’re right that Presidents are often busy, but the truth is, in America, there is no more important title than citizen. And I am so proud of you for using your voice to speak out on behalf of the children of Flint.
That’s why I want you to be the first to know that I’m coming to visit Flint on May 4th. I want to make sure people like you and your family are receiving the help you need and deserve. Like you, I’ll use my voice to call for change and help lift up your community.
Letters from kids like you are what make me so optimistic for the future. I hope to meet you next week, “Little Miss Flint.”
Mari’s letter reads:
Hello my name is Mari Copeny and I’m 8 years old, I live in Flint, Michigan and I’m more commonly known around town as “Little Miss Flint”. I am one of the children that is effected by this water, and I’ve been doing my best to march in protest and to speak out for all the kids that live here in Flint. This Thursday I will be riding a bus to Washington, D.C. to watch the congressional hearings of our Governor Rick Snyder. I know this is probably an odd request but I would love for a chance to meet you or your wife. My mom said chances are you will be too busy with more important things, but there is a lot of people coming on these buses and even just a meeting from you or your wife would really lift people’s spirits. Thank you for all that do for our country. I look forward to being able to come to Washington and to be able to see Gov. Snyder in person and to be able to be in the city where you live.
We’re glad the president is visiting Flint. We just hope it’s followed up by a plan of action.