Happy Sunshine Week, an “annual nationwide celebration of access to public information and what it means for you and your community.” Thank you for supporting local journalism, which can entail many things, from covering local government meetings and requesting public records to holding elected officials accountable. It can also mean answering a question as basic as: “Is the water coming out of my faucet safe to drink?”
Two reporters, Laura Schulte, and Katelyn Ferral, collected tap water from 40 homes across Wisconsin and sent the samples to a certified lab for testing. They found that 12 of the 40, or 30%, had levels of PFAS, also known as “forever chemicals,” topped federal recommended safety limits. One sample was 450 times over.
We did that because Wisconsin has done little sampling of PFAS chemicals, which cannot easily break down and remain in the soil, water, and people’s bodies. The substances are linked to an increased risk of cancer, thyroid problems, and hypertension.
YES: I will support cover of the environment in Wisconsin with a tax-deductible donation
Water is everywhere in Wisconsin. Despite the tough economic times, we’ve expanded reporting on water thanks to the national Report for America program, which places reporters in newsrooms to shine a light on topics that don’t get the attention they deserve.
In June, we brought Madeline Heim on board to cover the Mississippi River basin and Caitlin Looby to focus on the Great Lakes. We can’t continue their reporting without your generous support, writing stories like:
During Sunshine Week, can we count on you to help us match the support of Report for America for corps members Caitlin and Madeline? Your tax-deductible donations go directly to pay their salaries and allow this reporting to continue.
COUNT ME IN: Reporting on Wisconsin water is important to my family, I will help today
Thanks again for your incredible support. Readers like you have donated thousands of dollars to make this work possible.
Greg Borowski is executive editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and the USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin.
DONATIONS VIA MAIL: Checks should be made to: “The GroundTruth Project.” In the check's subject line, please designate “Report for America Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Campaign.” The check should be addressed: The GroundTruth Project, Lockbox Services, 9450 SW Gemini Dr, PMB 46837, Beaverton, Oregon 97008-7105.
Janice is a full-time mom who likes to write on a range of topics in her spare time. She specializes in the Home, Garden, and Recycling topics. Janice is our Lifestyle and positive vibe expert. She keeps the office running.