At eight years old, Mari Copeny — known around town as “Little Miss Flint” — wrote to President Obama last month from her home in Flint, Michigan to share how she is working to bring attention to the public health crisis in her community. She also noted that she’s headed the President’s way, and asked if she could meet him during her trip to Washington, D.C.
This week, President Obama wrote back to “Little Miss Flint” with some big news: He’s coming to town. On Wednesday, May 4th, the President will travel to Flint, Michigan where he will hear first-hand from Flint residents like Mari about the public health crisis, receive an in-person briefing on the federal efforts in place to help respond to the needs of the people of Flint, and speak directly with members of the Flint community.
Read Mari’s letter to President Obama, and then check out his reply:
Hello my name is Mari Copeny and I’m 8 years old, I live in Flint, Michigan and I’m more commonly known around town as “Little Miss Flint”. I am one of the children that is effected by this water, and I’ve been doing my best to march in protest and to speak out for all the kids that live here in Flint. This Thursday I will be riding a bus to Washington, D.C. to watch the congressional hearings of our Governor Rick Snyder. I know this is probably an odd request but I would love for a chance to meet you or your wife. My mom said chances are you will be too busy with more important things, but there is a lot of people coming on these buses and even just a meeting from you or your wife would really lift people’s spirits. Thank you for all that do for our country. I look forward to being able to come to Washington and to be able to see Gov. Snyder in person and to be able to be in the city where you live.
The White House
April 24, 2016
Dear Mari: Thank you for writing to me. You’re right that Presidents are often busy, but the truth is, in America, there is no more important title than citizen. And I am so proud of you for using your voice to speak out on behalf of the children of Flint.
That’s why I want you to be the first to know that I’m coming to visit Flint on May 4th. I want to make sure people like you and your family are receiving the help you need and deserve. Like you, I’ll use my voice to call for change and help lift up your community.
Letters from kids like you are what make me so optimistic for the future. I hope to meet you next week, “Little Miss Flint.”