As reported by NBC News, on Monday, September 26, 2022, The U.S. Department of Justice threatened to take legal action against local officials in Mississippi if they don’t take the necessary steps to fix problems with the City of Jackson’s water supply, noting that Jackson’s water system is at a “breaking point.”
The move from the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division comes just weeks after Lieff Cabraser and co-counsel filed the first federal class action lawsuit on behalf of the residents of Jackson, Mississippi over the extreme water crisis in and around Jackson that left residents without running water for weeks. The lawsuit accuses the City of Jackson of neglecting the water supply for decades, culminating in a complete shutdown in August 2022 that left over 153,000 residents, 82% of whom are Black, without access to running water. These residents lacked safe drinking water, or water for basic needs such as making powdered baby formula, cooking, showering, or laundry.
On September 15, Gov. Tate Reeves lifted a weeks-long boil-water notice, officially declaring the water in Jackson as safe to drink. However, as noted by Lieff Cabraser partner Mark Chalos, who represents the plaintiffs in the case, “many Jacksonians remain suspicious of the city’s water quality.”
“Many residents have lost trust in the leadership who are telling them that and are very skeptical of any proclamation from a government official that the water is now magically safe for them to drink,” Chalos said.
In response to the DOJ, Jackson City Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, said that his administration plans to cooperate fully with federal officials.
Read the full article on the NBC News website.
Learn more about the Jackson Mississippi Water Crisis Class Action.
Contact a Recognized Environmental Disaster Lawyer at Lieff Cabraser
Impacted residents interested to learn more information or to see how the civil lawsuit will accelerate water and system restoration and provide compensation for those harmed by the crisis, we urge you to contact us today using the form on the Jackson water crisis page.