Flint protesters: "Do your job" to Snyder, representative - WNEM TV 5

Flint protesters: "Do your job" to Snyder, representative

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LANSING, MI (WNEM/AP) -

Security guards have evicted protesters from the chambers of the Michigan House of Representatives after they converged on the state capitol to condemn Gov. Rick Snyder's decision to close four remaining free bottled water sites in Flint.

More than 50 people, mostly residents of the city that has dealt with lead-contaminated water, were kicked out of a House session while chanting, "Do your job. Open the pods."

One man told reporters he was detained while security guards evicted the protesters from the chamber, but he said he was released within an hour. He would not provide his full name.

"They still need to fix what they broke," said Anthony Paciorek, volunteer organizer.

Paciorek organized Wednesday's rally. He said since the crisis began nearly four years ago, the protests had died down some. But he said it is regaining steam now that the state has declared Flint's water safe enough to drink.

"Despite the fact that tests say it's four parts per billion, which is underneath the federal level. We understand that. But we as citizens of Flint know that the only acceptable level of lead in the water is zero," Paciorek said.

Which is why activists like Lashaya Darisaw say it's time for her representatives to step up and start listening to residents' demands.

"Citizens of Flint are paying $300 to $400 a month for water that they cannot use. We're not living in a third world country. Water should be easily accessible," Darisaw said.

The protesters also condemned their representative, Democrat Sheldon Neeley, saying he should be voted out of office because he's not doing enough to fight for clean water in the city.

Neeley said he hears them and is encouraging their right to protest. He said the key to fixing the crisis is in the governor's office.

"He needs to provide and work with a little more humanitarian efforts. And make sure these people are comfortable. It's a crisis of confidence inside the city of Flint and it's erupting throughout all of Michigan," Neeley said.

Copyright 2018 WNEM (Meredith Corporation)/Associated Press. All rights reserved. 

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