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Education groups hosting safe water rally

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) – Clean, safe water that’s flowing properly for students and faculty members in Jackson.

That’s what leaders with the Mississippi and Jackson Association of Educators are advocating for as the boil water notice continues affecting schools. There is a public safe water rally this weekend to put action behind their message.

“Low water pressure, no water pressure, boil water alerts, it disrupts the learning environment,” said Jackson Association of Educators President George Stewart.

“Clean safe water is an education issue. In the largest city in our state, we are having an issue with it, and it shouldn’t be like this,” Mississippi Association of Educators Erica Jones.

Leaders with the Jackson Association of Educators and the Mississippi Association of Educators spoke out about Jackson’s ongoing water crisis.

Tens of thousands of Jackson customers remain under a boil water notice after the Mississippi State Department of Health imposed that notice on all surface water connections last month because of cloudy water.

“So, they are having a double impact they are facing issues at home and reporting to school where the issues are continuing,” said Jones.

They point to the most recent issue at Forest Hill High School. The school dismissed classes early due to low water pressure on Tuesday and students are learning virtually Wednesday.

“That is an issue because many of our students are able to make that pivot, but our many vulnerable students who are not able to make that pivot effectively and they need and require face-to-face instruction to maximize their learning potential.”

They say the time for change is now because the water woes are saturating students and parents with problems.

“You run the risk of parents trying to figure out how to get off work, how on the drop of a dime get off, how to figure out a time when things like this happen, so the mere fact schools are being shut down so this is indeed an education issue,” said Stewart.

Stewart and Jones say this weekend there will be a safe water rally to get more people involved in finding solutions to this water crisis.

“We want all parties involved on the state, local and national level to do something about the water heater in Jackson. And our educators deserve it, our students deserve it and our community deserves it,” said Jones.

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