Just before Christmas, Congress approved nearly $50 billion in additional aid for Ukraine. The U.S. has poured billions into Ukraine since Russia invaded the country on Feb. 24. Meanwhile, American citizens in Jackson, Mississippi, are having trouble getting access to clean water.
The new round of Ukraine funding from the pro-war American slush fund came just two days after Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky made his first wartime trip abroad, visiting with President Joe Biden. The new aid package caused pushback from both Republicans, who questioned the massive spending, and progressive Democrats, who have called for peace talks.
In total, American allocations to support Ukraine’s defense against the Russian invasion will exceed $100 billion this year, The New York Times reported.
Yet on home soil, many in Jackson complain they haven’t received much-needed federal help to deal with its long-term water crisis.
In November, the federal government stepped in, and the Biden administration appointed a manager to improve the water system’s near-term stability. But many in the predominately-Black city say this isn’t enough to get them clean water now.
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Jackson is the state’s biggest city. Jackson is 82.47 percent Black or African American and 6.19 percent white.
There has been a struggle getting clean water since late summer due to flooding, and the problem was exasperated due to the recent winter storm. On Dec. 27, citizens in Jackson were issued a boil water order as the water coming out of faucets is not safe to drink.
“We continue to struggle to return pressure to the water system,” the city said, according to ABC News. “We are producing significant amounts of water and pushing that into the system, but the pressure is not increasing — despite those efforts at the plants.”
The city asked residents to “refrain from reporting pressure loss,” as it said it’s, “well aware of the system pressure issues.”
A Christmas winter storm caused water pipes to break and left thousands of residents of Jackson, Mississippi, without running water on Dec. 26. The city was still struggling to return water pressure to its frail water system, NBC News reported.
In mid-to-late August 2022, heavy rains led to flooding along the Pearl River watershed. Flooding damaged one of the water treatment plants leading to an inability to produce sufficient water pressure at the area treatment plant, according to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy.
Charles McCaskill, 68, calls out his thanks to members of the Mississippi Students Water Crisis Advocacy team who delivered two cases of water to his south Jackson, Miss., home, on Sept . 7, 2022. A boil-water advisory has been lifted for Mississippi’s capital, and the state will stop handing out free bottled water on Saturday. But the crisis isn’t over. Water pressure still hasn’t been fully restored in Jackson, and some residents say their tap water still comes out looking dirty and smelling like sewage. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)