About the Flint water crisis

Official Statement

A Betrayal of Public Trust on the Part of Government Officials

What happened in Flint is a tragedy and the people of Flint deserve a true and accurate accounting of the disastrous actions taken by City, State and Federal officials who chose to save money at the expense of their health. 

The people of Flint are innocent victims who deserved better, but whatever wrongdoing occurred, the ongoing trial will prove that none of it was done by VNA, and that these same government officials who lied to the people of Flint also lied to VNA by withholding critical information.  

After years of investigation, it is now well-established that the Flint water crisis was a massive failure of government, from the politicians at the very top of Michigan government, including Governor Snyder and members of his senior staff, to the bureaucrats on the ground in Flint. All of them failed in their duties. They had the power to fix the problems with Flint’s water, and they had every opportunity to do so.  Worse, not only did they not fix the problem, they lied to minimize the scale of the crisis. 

VNA had no control over Flint’s water and no role in starting, prolonging, or worsening the Flint water crisis. VNA was a consultant who was hired to do a one-week review of Flint’s water, ten months after the politicians switched the City of Flint’s water source from water treated by the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department to untreated Flint River water. When VNA arrived, its engineers asked the right questions, but could not imagine that the government officials and bureaucrats would give them inaccurate information or even go as far as to lie to them. 

VNA gave good advice to the City. They analyzed the data they were given and made a series of important recommendations which were, tragically for the people of Flint, ignored by the politicians and bureaucrats who actually had the power to do something about it.  As will be clear at trial, ignoring VNA’s advice was part of a long pattern of neglect by the people in charge of ensuring the safety of Flint’s water.

During its short assignment in Flint, VNA said the right things, and said them to the right people, but the people in charge did not want to listen to them and failed to act to end the crisis. 

VNA wants to bring the truth about the Flint water crisis: an unbelievable story of state officials and others who thought they knew better than the people of Flint, and then dug in their heels, as the people of Flint objected to what was happening with their water. 

This trial is the first time the story of the Flint water crisis will be heard by a jury. VNA welcomes this opportunity to defend itself. At the end of trial, it will be clear that responsibility for what happened in Flint lies with the government officials who failed the people of Flint with their lies, their arrogance, and their incompetence. Any attempt to lay responsibility at the feet of VNA runs contrary to the facts.