Fear of Schuylkill Punch: Residents with lower incomes spend more on water, survey finds

Lately, Marangeli Mejia-Rabell has been trying to get her partner to drink more from the tap.
Mejia-Rabell is director of community economic development at the North Philly’s Village of Arts and Humanities, where she runs into fear of municipal water all the time.
She’s excited about a new Philadelphia Water Department program that could help sway her neighbors to drink more tap — and ultimately save a bunch of money.
PWD surveys show there isn’t just one reason.
The most common reason Philadelphians reported they prefer bottled water is the taste — 53 percent of respondents said that’s why they avoid drinking from the tap.
A large number of residents responded that they’re concerned about the quality of Philly’s water supply, and the city pipes that carry it into their homes.
Following those reasons, 17 percent of people cited what happened in Flint, Michigan as reason for their distrust.
“That probably did not help,” Dahme acknowledged.
People reporting they don’t drink tap water seem to be willing to reconsider: 53 percent of respondents said they’d drink tap water if they knew for sure it was safe.
PWD is planning a bunch of programming to educate Philly residents on water quality and safety.

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