Miss Michigan Emily Sioma used the Miss America stage to call out her state’s water crisis.
During her eight-second introduction at the Miss America pageant.
“In talking about these struggles, we are better able to resolve the problems,” she explained. “When we start listening to people who are asking us for help, who are telling us that they don’t have clean water, that’s when we can start to figure out why that’s happening and find those resolutions.”
Michigan’s water issues came to light in 2014 after residents began experiencing symptoms like rashes and hair loss. Flint’s water was tested and dangerous levels of lead and copper were found. Though officials say Flint’s water is now safe, in August, 16 Detroit schools shut off their sources of drinking water.
Sioma says she felt it was her responsibility to remind the nation that Michigan is still in need of help.
“I am not an expert on this, but I am passionate about making sure that I use my platforms to elevate the voices of others, to raise them up to be able to tell their truth,” she said.