Flint, Michigan is going through a severe contaminated water crisis. The water supply in Flint has an extremely high level of lead, and residents are complaining about brown water with odor, on top of possible poisoning.
The government is now dealing with the issue after more than possibly a year of contamination, as are local restaurants and bars. According to The Detroit News, small businesses are suffering because people are afraid to eat and drink at establishments within the area. “People don’t want to eat,” said Flint “Original” Coney Island owner Atanas Zelevarovski. “The first question is: Do you got city water? Yes. Then you got filters? Yes. It doesn’t do any good.”
Zelevarovski, like many, has installed filters in his kitchen, as well as in soda and coffee machines. But it doesn’t seem like the trust is there yet for patrons to want to take the risk.
Other restaurants and bars in the area are offering their customers bottled water, while some are trying to convince customers that the process of filtration has always been in effect at their businesses. “The quality of our main ingredient is very important. We have filtered our water since the day we started brewing,” Tenacity Brewing wrote in a statement posted to Facebook on Wednesday. “Our ongoing tests show that we are absolutely lead free. However, we recognize that our customers may have concerns so we want to reiterate that we filter, test, and taste our water every day!”
Officials are calling for food and drink businesses to check their water, and install filters on every faucet. However, every precaution still doesn’t seem to be building trust. “I’m ready to lock the doors. See the people here? They’re going to lose their job,” Zelevarovski said. “… I’m going to put up a big sign outside: Fix the water, I reopen.”
Want to help? You can donate to the Flint Water Fund.