DETROIT (AP) — The advice is simple and universal: Washing your hands with soap and water is one of the most effective ways to stop the spread of the coronavirus. But for millions of people across the country, that's not simple at all: They lack running water in their houses due to service shutoffs prompted by overdue bills.
The Rev. Roslyn Bouier remembers when children began to show up at the Brightmoor Connection Food Pantry on Detroit's northwest side, clutching empty pitchers. It was the summer of 2014 and the kids were parched. But their thirst didn't come from playing outside — they had no water at home.
That was the year the city of Detroit started its water shutoff campaign, turning off water to 28,500 residential accounts behind on payments.