Benton Harbor, Michigan
Benton Harbor Housing Commission
721 Nate Wells Sr Dr, Benton Harbor, MI 49022
Equity in housing and safe water
Benton Harbor is a predominantly African-American, mostly low-income community of 9,700 people, about 100 miles (160 kM) from Chicago, Illinois. Since October 2021, residents have been urged to use bottled water due to elevated levels of lead in the
municipal water. In Benton Harbor, levels of the toxic metal have continued to increase since the first batch of tests, records show, despite orders from the state’s environmental agency to treat Lake Michigan water with chemicals intended to form a protective coating inside lead pipes.
“Low-income communities and communities of color disproportionately experience contaminated tap water. We saw this problem most notoriously in Flint, but contaminated drinking water is a problem throughout the country and that is why we are here with the community in Benton Harbor.” – Drew Fitzgerald, Founder, 501CTHREE.
The Water Box launch is in collaboration with the Benton Harbor Housing Commission (BHHC) and is the culmination of training and water testing. The clean drinking water will be distributed and tested by BHHC’s staff to Housing Commission residents and the general public.
The Benton Harbor Housing Commission was established in 1949 and is committed to providing decent, safe, sanitary in good repair subsidized housing through the United States Department of Housing (HUD) for qualifying families living in Benton
Harbor, MI. BHHC owns and operates 398 housing units throughout the City of Benton Harbor, and is committed to ensuring that all residents and applicants have the opportunity of choice in where they live.
The Water Box at BHHC was made possible by a donation from Elkay. Family-owned since 1920, Elkay has been making innovative products and delivering exceptional customer care for over a century. While proud to be America's No. 1 selling kitchen sink company, Elkay expanded its offerings more than four decades ago, and today delivers faucets, water coolers, drinking fountains. Like your family, Elkay has values and traditions that endure - like our commitment to sustainability and giving back to our community. Headquartered in the United States in Downers Grove, Illinois, Elkay employs over 2,400 employees worldwide, working from 28 locations across the U.S., China, and Mexico. For more information, visit www.elkay.com.
Water Box Impact
Single-use 16 oz. plastic bottles replaced
Gallons of clean water distributed
Kilograms of greenhouse gasses avoided