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Panelists highlight inequities in water access in Indianapolis

Panel held to highlights inequities in water access

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indiana Sports Corp hosted a panel on Thursday night to discuss the need for more equitable access to water.

The panel discussion highlighted water safety training and access to the sport of swimming, particularly for Black communities. One panelist talked to News 8 and shared what the group’s goal is.

Susan Hyatt, a professor emerita of anthropology for Indiana University Indianapolis, said, “I think our goal here tonight is to make people aware of the historical reasons why African-Americans — particularly teenagers and children, but adults as well — have had very high rates of water-related accidents and drowning, and also to help people understand that why these events happen, why these mishaps occur, is not by chance, but because policy decisions have been made about our landscape and our infrastructure that have embedded inequalities in the city that are very easy for us to not see.”

The event came amidst the backdrop of Indianapolis preparing to host the 2024 Olympic swimming team trials in June at Lucas Oil Stadium.

This story is from a script aired on WISH-TV.