Entire City of Jackson, MS To Lose Running Water for Indefinite Amount of Time

by Tia Bailey

Mississippi’s governor announced on Monday that those who live in Jackson will lose running water for an unspecified amount of time. According to Governor Tate Reeves, “A major pump at Jackson’s main water treatment facility was damaged and the city has been using backup pumps.” 

The people of Jackson will not have running water until the pump is fixed, affecting 180,000 people

Because of this, all Jackson Public Schools are making a switch back to online learning. The district said: “We will continue to closely monitor the water conditions on a day-by-day basis at our schools while conferring with city officials to determine when scholars and staff can safely return for in-person learning.” 

Reeves shared that both drinkable and non-drinkable water will be distributed to residents, as the lack of water is indefinite. However, he had also told people to buy their own. He asked people to “leave those resources for those who absolutely need them.” 

The New York Times shared this on Twitter, and received a confused reaction from people. One person wrote: “Who doesn’t absolutely need water?”

Jackson, Mississippi Without Running Water for Unspecified Amount of Time

There is no timeline for when this will be fixed. The only guess is a tweet with an estimate from the City of Jackson’s Twitter. “The water shortage is likely to last the next couple of days,” it says. “Contrary to some reports, the City is NOT cutting off water to residents. The City remains in contact with the state Department of Health and the EPA over continued issues with the system.”

Additionally, there is no water for “serious needs” like fighting fires or even flushing toilets. Residents have been told to not drink water because it is “raw” from the reservoirs. The state has begun emergency maintenance on the pump. 

People on Twitter sounded off about the situation. One tweet in response to the New York Times’ article reads: “If you’re a non-Mississippian reading this thread, you should know our government has passed on every opportunity to help with this and has consistently called it a Jackson problem.’”

Another reply says: “This neglect is not just in Jackson. Show me a small town, maj black population in MS and I’ll show you unfathomable conditions not seen in some 3rd world countries.”

Reeves declared a state of emergency and shared the statement on Twitter, “I have declared a State of Emergency and activated the Mississippi National Guard in response to the ongoing running water crisis in Jackson.”

Many pointed out in the replies how the water situation in Jackson has been a problem well before this. One person responded: “It wasn’t a problem for this administration until the rest of the country began reporting it. Jackson has been seeking assistance on its water woes from the state for at least 3 years only to be turned away.”