JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – A lot of households in Jackson and beyond are approaching an entire week without any running water. Water distribution sites are helping, but a majority of senior citizens don’t drive or move quickly enough to find the water before they run out.
We drove through a lot of the Georgetown community in South Jackson speaking to people. Some approaching 100-years-old. Had it not been for individuals going out of their way to bring water to them they would be stuck at home with no running water.
Elease Morgan recently celebrated her 97th birthday, but the best present of all for her would be to get her sink and toilet to work again.
“It would be better if they would find out the neighborhoods where we have more elder people and homes where people can’t get out and get water,” Morgan told us. “They would not just have a site here and site there. But get it to the elder people.”
Monday morning the City of Jackson set up only two water distribution sites. One at Forest Hill High and the other at Raines Elementary School. Not much help for senior citizens who can’t drive anymore, or lift heavy tubs of water.
“Majority of people on this street are elder people,” Morgan added. “We have no way of going to get the water and the few families we have are hard to get a hold of. So it’s very inconvenient for getting water for the needy things.”
With the help of good samaritans bringing bottled or containers of water, some of Jackson’s older residents have been able to flush their toilets, wash dishes and brush their teeth. But for Wallace Dabney who’s partially blind, this can only go on for so long.
“I don’t have no way to get around and get no water so I just depend on whoever comes by,” Dabney said. “I haven’t called nobody because I don’t know who to call.”
At the city level, Ward three Councilman Kenneth Stokes brought these problems to the city council who passed a measure in their emergency meeting Monday to get a plan together immediately.
“We discussed bringing tankers in these neighborhoods like Georgetown, getting one here at Lanier, or Vernon Addition and Shady Oak,” Councilman Stokes explained. “Where you can get the water to them. So we did approve money today for tankers, somewhere around $500,000.”
This plan passed with a 7-0 vote from the city council but has yet to be signed by Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba. The city may also need to go through the Mississippi Department of Emergency Management before they can get water tankers to communities.
In the meantime people in neighborhoods in and outside of Jackson with a majority of elderly continue to ask for donations of water to people you know can’t get out. Including the Rose Apartments of Jackson where everyone is sharing cases of water to keep sinks, toilets, and tubs running.