Thirst for Justice a documentary film by Leana Hosea
In the spring of 2015, residents from two separate communities enlist the help of scientists to prove their suspicions that their water had become dangerously contaminated. In Sander, Arizona, Janene Yazzie, finds out from tests carried out by a PhD student, that the drinking water in her son’s school–once her own school–has more than double the acceptable levels of uranium. Further, she learns that the State has for years kept relevant results hidden from the public and stopped further testing. On the other side of the country in Flint, Michigan, residents bypassed the state too and organised for their water to be tested by the scientist Marc Edwards. The results proved what the State had been denying that the water was contaminated with lead and deadly bacteria. When the General Motors car plant complained that the water was corroding their car parts, the authorities put them back on clean water. The same was not done for the people of Flint. It led GM worker Adam Murphy and his conservative family to turn into activists.
Screening at the Raindance Film Festival 2019 is ‘Thirst For Justice’, nominated for the Best UK Feature and Best Documentary on September 20th at 18:45 and September 22nd at 13:30 at the Vue cinema in Piccadilly.
About Thirst for Justice
You might think America is a democracy, where freedom of speech and basic rights are guaranteed. But at its heart, there is a great injustice. Against all the odds several extraordinary citizens are banding together and fighting back for their basic right to clean water. Armed only with facts and their illnesses, they risk arrest to take on the might of industry and government. From Flint to the Navajo Nation, via Standing Rock, this is their story.
Director Leana says
“I’ve been a BBC journalist in international news for the past twelve years and I’ve covered a lot of incredible stories. I was breaking news in Cairo, Egypt reporting on The Arab Spring from day one in Tahrir Square, the war in Gaza and the crisis in Yemen. I went to America in September 2016 on a prestigious Knight-Wallace Fellowship for Journalists at the University of Michigan to research water contamination issues on the Navajo land and in Flint. I found a story so compelling and characters so engaging that I knew I had to make this film and give a voice to people who are being ignored. While working on the film I was given the Inaugural Media Fellowship at the School of Environment and Sustainability, University of Michigan, where I furthered my environmental studies. It’s not been easy and I was even arrested while filming. I faced $85,000 in restitution by North America’s biggest pipeline company. But these communities are just the canaries in the coalmine. The UN says that by 2030 demand for clean water will outstrip supply by 40% so if we don’t stand up now for our basic rights to clean water, perhaps one day soon it will be too late”.
Take a look at the Sizzle Reel
Thirst For Justice sizzle reel from leana on Vimeo.
Length: 70 minute documentary film. Get your tickets HERE
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