Elijah Daniel Is Helping To Organise A Concert For The Flint Water Crisis

7 June 2018, 12:40

Elijah Daniel and Mari Copeny
Elijah Daniel and Mari Copeny. Picture: Matt Winkelmeyer

By Josh Lee

The YouTube star has put his clout to brilliant use

Elijah Daniel is throwing his clout behind the ongoing water crises in Flint, Michigan, by organising a benefit concert to raise money for those affected.

In late May, Elijah tweeted that Flint still doesn't have clean tap water, and praised Mari Copeny, a young activist fighting for clean water, for her work.

In the days following, Elijah began helping to plan the Flint Summer Bash, a birthday concert for Mari Copeny aimed at raising funds for the water crisis. While the lineup is still under wraps, Elijah tweeted on May 31st that the lineup was "getting better than Coachella and EDC together."

Some of the artists who Elijah reached out to have already expressed their interest in performing at the concert on July 7th, including Bea Miller, who tweeted "yes where do I sign up" after being asked by Elijah.

What is the Flint water crisis?

In 2014, the source of drinking water for Flint residents was switched from Lake Huron and the Detroit River, to the Flint River. From as early as 2015, Flint residents began to report health issues caused by their new water supply, with locals providing bottles of discoloured tap water as evidence of the river's contamination. Shortly after, it was discovered that water from the Flint River contained a concentration of the poisonous metal lead that was seven times higher than the United States Environmental Protection Agency's "acceptable limit." Ingesting lead can lead to all sorts of health problems, including abdominal pains and sickness, infertility, and even brain damage.

In 2016, Flint residents were advised against drinking tap water for drinking, cooking, cleaning and bathing, however damage had already been done: in 2015 it was estimated that the percentage of Flint children with elevated levels of lead in their blood had doubled from 2.5% to 5%, while an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease - a type of pneumonia - in 2014-15 was also attributed to the new water source.

Flint residents aren't expected to be able to drink tap water safely until at least 2020.