Seniors and home-bound not getting water fast enough

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FLINT (WJRT) - (01/20/16) - In the past week, ABC12 News has been getting phone calls from seniors and home-bound people living in Flint. They're asking why they aren't getting bottled water and other supplies.

Right now, there are two main ways free water and supplies are being distributed. One is to go to a place like the fire stations around town; another is to get on a list to get supplies delivered.

Some people are falling through the cracks.

Several times a day, Helena Jones, who goes by Vicky, uses her walker to go to the kitchen, take out her ice and water bottles, and fill up the glass with water.

It's a lot of effort for a 65-year-old grandmother.

"Getting around is just not an option for me,” Jones said.

It's been weeks since water distribution centers were set up and door-to-door deliveries started. Jones is still buying her water.

Whenever her daughter or her friend has a chance, they take her to the store.

"I haven't got one case yet. And I don't think that's fair,” she said.

Jones says she's one of the lucky ones, she has some help.

"I mean, it's wonderful that people are helping, but it's not trickling down to the people who are home-bound,” she said.

Jones lives in an apartment building on the south side. She has called 211 for help, but she didn't have much luck - even though ABC12 has been told that 211 operators and the Genesee County Sheriff's Department are taking names of people who are home-bound and need water.

"And they're saying there's help available but...I listen to the news all along and nobody's coming this way,” Jones said.

Jones uses bottled water to drink, cook with and brush her teeth with. She'll use a case in just two days.

That's the problem - 211 and the Sheriff's Department are helping seniors and home-bound people out, but water goes quickly, and they can only work so fast.

In the meantime, Jones hopes someone listens to her so other seniors can get help, too.

"We matter. We've worked hard all our lives and paid our dues and paid our taxes and this is what we get,” she said.



 
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