New class action lawsuit aims to add pressure for answers, fundi - WNEM TV 5

New class action lawsuit aims to add pressure for answers, funding

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

As the water crisis plays itself out, there's a common sentiment in Flint.

"We need to be able to know what to do, we don't know what to do," said resident Patsy Sutton.

Sutton lives near downtown and knows the water will one day be safe again.

But she worries about the future for her granddaughter, who's had rashes and tested positive for lead.

"I'm not going to be around in 15-20 years, and I want to make sure she's taken care of," Sutton said.

On Monday night, Sutton joined hundreds of others in the same boat.

"A lot of people need to be held accountable. And it's been kind of evasive and the facts are elusive to everybody," said resident Matthew Willbrodt.

They listened to attorney Ven Johnson lay out possible courses of action.

"Our position, of course, is no one out there should ever do this on their own. It's a huge, legal endeavor," Johnson said.

Johnson is a Saginaw native and now is lead attorney for Johnson Law in Detroit and Grand Rapids.

He updated people on the status of a class action he, along with an environmental class action law firm, are behind.

Johnson said a federal judge in Detroit has taken it up, but also reminded people they can get an individual lawyer to help them through litigation that could take years to resolve.

"The only way we can make sure this never happens again is hold these people accountable under the law," Johnson said.

Johnson hopes added pressure will get families answers and help fast-track a fund to help compensate those impacted.

Sutton said this whole thing has been a nightmare and said she hopes she can get some answers she desperately needs. 

"All of a sudden, it's like bam. So we don't know what to do. So we've got to open our ears and listen and go from there," Sutton said.

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