A Registered Nurse Speaks Out About Her Search For Clean Water

We love  sharing stories of people who either visit our spring or share our love of springs.

Mary Richardson (BA, MS, RN, IBCLC) is a  registered nurse who is on a search for clean water.  So much so that she moved from her home in central Pennsylvania to Manitou Springs, CO (1,600 miles !!!!).

Mary shares a pic of a glass of water from Manitou Springs

She reached out to us at Boston Clear on her journey across the country and her passion for mineral water.  Mary informed us that there is a worldwide Baby Friendly movement, a group dedicated to standardizing care for infants … clean water being one of them.  However, clean water for babies is not the only thing they need,  they need nourishment that comes from a mother’s milk … so when some hospitals encourage powder formula, we introduce a water problem.  According to Baby-Friendly USA, U.S. hospitals that have received a Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) designation must follow certain rules about when and how they offer formula to new parents.

Young mothers, parents, are looking for guidance in their first days after giving birth.  Some hospitals provide free formula for newborns (courtesy of large formula makers like Nestle).  The fact is, this sort of give-away deters women from wanting to breast feed and then mothers’ milk soon dries up.  The result is that we have too many babies on formula that would be much better served having something better for them.  Mary recognizes that mothers can choose, but are they getting all the facts to make the right choice or are these choices driven by profit?

Many doctors recommend breast feeding for up to a year.  So how many mothers choose breast feeding for their child?  In the U.S., about 80% of women start out breastfeeding but a number of studies suggest that this percentage drops off quickly after the first month of life.  Only about half of U.S. babies (51.8 percent) are still breastfeeding at 6 months of age … by the time the child is one year old, only 34% are being breastfed.  According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC):

“Many mothers begin breastfeeding but need community support to help them overcome challenges they may face in the hospital, when they go home, or after they return to work. This support might include breastfeeding education programs, improved maternity care practices in hospitals, peer and professional support for moms; and adequate space and equipment to breastfeed or express breast milk in workplaces and childcare centers.”

A look at a map of breastfeeding statistics reveals a concern that some states, particularly the poorer states, experience shorter breastfeeding terms for their babies … the population in these states, the ones who can least afford additional costs, appear to choose the additional cost for formula over babies’ health.  That just does not make sense!

Our own Anthony Gattineri on his way to Manitou Springs, CO … connecting the water.

While Mary acknowledges these challenges, many hospitals do not fully inform mothers of the dangers associated with formula along with the great benefits of breast feeding.  As Mary put it, “Hospitals hand out formula like it’s candy.  I love babies, being a mom/baby nurse and when I found out, well my heart collapsed.

Mary presented all the information she could to the hospital about the trap in which they were putting new mothers and their newborns.  They took a tough stand and when Mary saw that there was no hope of her employer becoming “Baby Friendly,” she made the move.  Now, living in Colorado, she has found a new hospital and a new way of life.

The springs in Colorado are renowned and Mary has visited a number of them in the area.  One of the things we noted was that one of the websites we visited about the springs said that they believed that the springs “once were thought to have healing powers.”  Mary said they absolutely have healing powers!  The photo here is one Mary snapped on her porch enjoying a cool glass of water.

So what makes Manitou so special:

Rainwater and snow melt from Pikes Peak and surrounding mountains soak into rock fractures. As the water penetrates to great depth, it becomes heated and mineralized. The warm water naturally flows up into cavernous limestone where it becomes carbonated, then issues from the numerous natural and drilled springs throughout Manitou. Because the water takes thousands of years to complete its journey from mountain sources, it is totally free of industrial and atmospheric contamination.

Makes us thirsty just thinking about it.  As for Mary, she loves her move but misses her home in Pennsylvania.  Her dedication to exposing how big companies trade babies’ health for profit is to be commended.  Her hope is that the comradery among her new co-workers will spark some renewed energy to fight on.  Mary said,

“I think of our children and the future for our planet every day and feel I have a moral obligation to do my part.  I want to leave this world a better place.  My voice may not be the best, but I have one.”

Mary believes that the lack of information on what we ingest has spread to our water.  As she put it, we believe we can turn on the faucet and the water that comes out is safe … it is not.  Like formula, it is full of chemicals that imitate the real thing but fall short.  Mary told me, “We have to realize that we are taking toxins into our body if we drink water from a tap.  As a society we have to realize that we are causing our own diseases.  The search for pure, natural, nourishment will help us all live long, happier, lives.”

Mary asked me to share a poem she wrote about how big companies are robbing our babies.  We with her luck in her new life and will certainly keep you all posted on her spring journey:

FIRST ONE IS ALWAYS FREE

Dealers of liquid formula, pushed through open doors,

Supplying a neighborhood nursery, non-“Baby Friendly” floor.  

Watchful nurses taking note, heed this curious sight,

Bottles appear mysteriously, cloak and dag by night.

Central nursery cabs and bins, always plumply stocked,

Ready to feed formula, complete with swanky tops.  

Polished logos shining bright, glossy picture themes,

Fess uncertain knowledge and quite possibly, malice schemes.

Special hand-held bottles, come desperate to defend,

We comprehend, we realize, our moms are hooked again.   

We’re solemn and profess our part, and wipe our conscience clean,

“Just one to help a real tired mom, we pray she doesn’t wean.” 

We struggle to unravel, this contorted paradigm,

You see, breastfeeding education, demands a massive chunk of time.

Working thru the dead of night, grim reality sets in,

There is no rest, we do our best, keep baby skin-to-skin.

Request for aide and some relief, a real Lactation Team?

I guess for now, yet somehow, tonight we only dream. 

Bravely marching forward, call bells unending ring,

We require reinforcement troops, to fight this dreadful thing.  

We have borne some heavy losses, during these Baby Friendly Times, 

We call upon our government to halt these human crimes.

The WHO CODE needs our grave support, to protect the weak and poor,

From predatory companies, with delusions of grandeur.   

Our under-education is a disrespectful shame,

To not call out an industry, that both profits and seeks to maim.  

Ours moms and babes deserve better, though a third world-wide apart,

We stand united together, until death do us part.

  • Mary Laura Richardson

We Welcome Those Who Are Coming From North Reading

As we always do, we talk to our customers visiting the spring.  We have noticed a number of you who were getting water from New England Water in North Reading.   WELCOME!

For the people who you met over the years while vending at NE Water, please share our location with those who are now looking for mineral spring water.  We are located at 165 Lowell Street in Lynnfield, MA … look for our sign!

Boston Clear Water – 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA 01940

Boston Clear and Pocahontas Spring is different from any mineral water you will ever drink or experience you will ever have.

First, you are welcome to take a moment before, during or after filling your container to find a moment of peace in our sanctuary on the side of the building next to the spring house.  There you can listen to the water trickle into the healing pool that has been a part of Native American history for centuries.  All faiths are welcome and many just come to find a place to be close to the earth.  Light a candle, sit on our bench and take in Mother Nature.

Our water comes directly from the spring house (no idea how old it is but it was before the creation of the United States), through a filter to remove any small particles, like rocks that could come up through the earth, and then the water passes an ultraviolet light destroying any bacteria.  The water is then dispensed into your container.

Bring your own container, we can accommodate any size container.  If you need a container, we offer our own glass jugs is cases (4 1-gallon containers) for a donation of $20.  When our offices are open, please stick your head in, share a story with the protector of the spring, and get your bottles.  We recommend that you store water in a dark, cool place until your drink in your home.

Our business is PEOPLE … we just also happen to provide the most amazing water on the planet.  We want to hear from you about your experience at Boston Clear so keep coming back to our blog, check out our Facebook and we Tweet stories of interest related to water, our planet, spiritual healing and health.

In a time when there are so many stories of water contamination throughout our area, come to a source of water that has been in operation for over 100 years …  a place where people have gathered to celebrate life for centuries.

We are conveniently located in a Hate Free Zone … all are welcome.

For those who are new to the spring, tell your friends about us and let us know what you think of our water by emailing us at aqua@BostonClearWater.com … or just stop by and tell us a story!

And The Story Continues … No Decision On Boston Clear’s Operation

Thanks to everyone who came out last night to support Boston Clear.  The Lynnfield ZBA clearly made note that they heard from many of you about how important our water is to you.  However, they did not hear the case because of other cases that were scheduled before us.

Lynnfield ZBA Meeting Sep 11, 2018

For those who showed up Tuesday at 7:30pm, it was over 3 hours and 30 minutes before ZBA Chairman John Fallon recognized the Boston Clear case.  It was clear, no pun intended, that our case would not be heard and it was also clear that the position of the neighbors who have started this needless fight are not backing down.  Their goal is to close the spring and have everything on the lot razed.

Boston Clear is scheduled to be the first case on the agenda on October 2, 2018 … 7:30pm at Al Merritt (600 Market Street, Lynnfield, MA).  One of the items that members of the committee said will NOT be part of the discussion is the quality of the water.  What?!  Among themselves they talked about our case and how the next meeting would proceed.  In those comments they recognized that the water is high quality and that a number of people have reached out to them about how important it is that the spring remain open.  Even so, Chairman Fallon said of the upcoming decision, “One of the parties will leave here aggrieved after the next meeting.”

The decision before the ZBA is a big one for us because it is about our ability to serve you water.  That decision is even more important because of the continued cases of dirty, undrinkable water in towns around Boston, particularly here in Lynnfield.  That the ZBA would consider closing this important water supply is unconscionable.

Boston Clear has submitted its position that the spring has been in operation for over 100 years.  Anthony Gattineri purchased the spring with the intention of allowing people to continue to have access to the spring … that has meant nourishing water and a place to find peace.  Anthony’s commitment to the spring can be felt by everyone he meets at the spring.  His handshake, his exchanging of stories, his personal knowledge of the people who visit, all are from an era that seems to echo back to a time lost … a time that our parents told us that once existed … a time when people genuinely cared about one another.

We ask for your support because we think that this decision by the ZBA must be something other than zoning, because that question was answered long ago.  Boston Clear obtained affidavits and has spent tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees just to track down people who have had to have their lives interrupted to give a statement that says, “I saw this spring open and people buying water there on a specific date.”  It is madness and the neighbors have gone to great lengths to harm our little company … and in turn, the people who want to come here.

This upcoming decision is about citizens’ rights to clean drinking water and a place to find peace, to worship as free people.

Stay tuned, we will be organizing our support efforts in the upcoming weeks.  In the meantime, you can still expect to see a welcoming smile on Anthony’s face and to be able to purchase the finest water in the universe.

One More Meeting In Lynnfield Regarding Boston Clear

Boston Clear will once again be defending your rights to be able to come get our precious water in a Lynnfield Zoning Board of Appeal Meeting on Tuesday, September 11 (7:30pm) at AL MERRITT CENTER 600 MARKET STREET LYNNFIELD, MA 01940

The issue is that there are four neighbors who do not want the spring to operate.  The four dominated a past ZBA meeting that consumed hours of time leading to no decision in the Boston Clear case and pushed back other cases that Lynnfield needed to address.

We are confident in our ability to move forward and hope that this meeting is the last so that we can move on and focus on serving our customers.  In times like this ,where clean water is a crisis in this country, we need to have a clean source for our families.  Many water supplies in the area, including that of Lynnfield Central Water District , are have trouble delivering clean water to its customers.

First, you need to know that a decision was made that Boston Clear could operate … thus the spring has remained open as it has for over 100 years.  However, four neighbors near the spring complained, thus the appeal.  (Here is the agenda that breaks down the case).

The CASE #18-14 Mary Bliss, Andrew Gallucci, Willis O’Brien and John Sievers, 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield 01940.  Here are the three issues these neighbors raised:

1) Boston Clear Water Company, LLC is unlawfully practicing a commercial use in a residential district (Single Residence C district) at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA 01940, as there is insufficient evidence to establish that a lawful preexisting non-conforming commercial use ever existed on said property.

2). To the extent that commercial activity was ever lawfully permitted at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA, as a lawful preexisting non-conforming use prior to the adoption of Zoning in Lynnfield, said use was unlawfully extended without relief from the Lynnfield Zoning Board and therefore is not protected from zoning enforcement as a lawful preexisting non- conforming use.

3). To the extent that commercial activity was ever lawfully permitted at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA, as a lawful preexisting non-conforming use prior to the adoption of Zoning In Lynnfield, all of said uses have since been abandoned for a a period of two (2) years, and therefore the use is no longer lawful and is not protected from zoning enforcement as a lawful preexisting non-conforming use, nor can the use of the property revert to commercial.

The requested relief from these four neighbors is as follows:

Order Boston Clear Water Company, LLC to immediately and forever cease and desist from all commercial use and related activity at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA. B. Order Boston Clear to remove all tangible commercial items and vehicles of every kind from 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA. C. Order the immediate demolition and removal of all commercial structures and debris at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA. D. Provide any further relief and issue any and all other orders and remedies the Board may deem appropriate and necessary to forever stop, enjoin, andremedy all of Boston Clear’s ongoing Zoning violations occurring at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield.MA.

We are confident in our approach and while we have grown weary of these unfounded complaints, it is time to move put closure to this matter.

Lend your voice and tell the ZBA what you think about the spring and its importance to your life.  You can contact the ZBA here or come to the meeting and let them know yourself.

We want to write more on the issues that are important to you … this one is important and we hope it is resolved tomorrow, we have more important work to do saving lives and the planet.

Can The Public Water System Ever Be Fixed? Probably Not

As we hear from all of those who stop by the spring, we are convinced that there are so many issues with our public water treatment facilities.  Our customers share their stories of why they come and more are telling us that they were driven here because they believe in the healing qualities of our water.  However, they also tell us that they no longer trust the water supply from their own town’s water system.

Your stories inspire us to do more outreach.  Beyond reaching out to the local residence  of Lynnfield, MA who  have been affected by discolored water that city officials think is “safe to drink,” we try to bring you stories  to share in your network about the challenges we face in finding safe drinking water.  It is a challenge.

In New Hampshire, there were 14 cases of Legionnaires’ disease from contaminated water systems at the Sands Resort at the end of July or beginning of August, including one person who died.  This contamination is circulated back through the public water system and treated with known strong chemicals like Chlorine.  We just do not believe that adding more chemicals to water is the best long term solution for bringing clean water to our faucets.  The truth is, that may never happen.

The cost for “fixing” Lynnfield’s water supply  was estimated to be from between $4 million (local fix) and $30 million (tie into the state water supply) and will take years.  We are  not even sure what “fixed” means because if it  just means the water is clear, we still cannot be sure of the chemicals still contained in it.  Also, the fix means that it even if the water was drinkable at the treatment plant, could it still be so after traveling miles in aging pipes?  The cost of replacing every pipe, up to the  point of where it comes out of the faucet would be cost prohibitive for any town like Lynnfield and there are THOUSANDS OF  TOWNS LIKE LYNNFIELD.

Drinking water, like what you find at our  spring in Lynnfield, comes from deep (we don’t even know how deep) within the earth.  The Pocahontas Spring is a gift that has found its way to the surface, through some miracle of nature, to your bottles that you fill here.  Those  who come to  our spring are just the beginning of a movement where people will be retrieving their own drinking water from a trusted source.  We cannot imagine a time in the foreseeable future where this  trend changes.

We keep our water affordable, available and pure.  Your coming to our spring reminds us of the trust you have instilled in us and the commitment we have made to the community … to the world.

Lynnfield MA Residents Affected By Contamination Get Free Water At Spring

We have people coming from all across the state, across the country, to visit our spring.

Last weekend, we offered free water to Lynnfield, MA residents who provided us with a copy of their Lynnfield Center Water District water bill.  We have extended the offer through September 10, and may go beyond that.   While the quality of our water is unmatched by any public water supplier on its best day of operation, we want to provide a solution to the community where we operate.

This problem is not unique to Lynnfield.  Each week we hear of problems with the water quality from coast to coast … and we are watching.

When you come to the spring simply go to the vending filler to the far left of the red building, turn on the spigot, fill your jug and deposit a copy of your water bill through the mail slot at our front door.  Like much of what we do, we rely on the honor system.

While you are at the spring, get to know the person next you.  We all come to the spring for reasons that are beyond just filling water containers … we are all searching for something and chances are that “something” is at the spring.

Cheers!!

Back To School With Nothing To Drink

In Detroit, MI, students were welcomed back to school but they were unable to drink from the water fountains!

Detroit Public Schools Community District shut off drinking water at all of the schools after testing revealed that 16 schools had elevated levels of lead and/or copper.  Superintendent Nikolai Vitti ordered testing of all schools this spring, after tests in 2016 found elevated levels of the metals. Initial results for 24 schools returned last week found 16 had levels higher than acceptable, he said in the emailed letter. All water sources, including drinking fountains and sinks, were tested. Water is still available for hand washing and toilet flushing.  I guess it’s a good idea to wash your hands in “lead and/or copper.”

Before we delve into Detroit, we wanted to take a look at the history of the drinking fountain.  Here is an article from the Washington Post (July 2015):

The modern era’s first free public water fountain was unveiled in London in 1859. Thousands gathered to watch officials turn on the tap. At its peak, about 7,000 people used the fountain each day. At that time, the rich were buying water brought in from the country. The poor were drinking water bottled from the sewage-infested Thames. Water-borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid were rampant.

One’s wealth or status should have nothing to do with their availability to safe drinking water.  This is particularly true when we talk about those who are most vulnerable, our young children, who drink out of trust.

Those of us who went to school in the 1960s and 1970s, remember drinking from a fountain without a thought that what we might be drinking was harmful.  Today, we cannot give those same assurances to students.  In Boston, there was a scandal related to high levels of lead and copper found in public drinking water supplies.  Now Detroit …  this is truly unacceptable.   Water, clean water,  is a required staple for a good education and our public water systems have failed us in this area.

Let us celebrate the return of kids to school by sending them off with  safe water that nourishes both their mind and body.  We should not assume that the bubblers in the school halls are sufficient when we have data that says that it may not even be safe in our own homes.

What Are You Drinking? We Need To Know

Each day we search for good news … news that nourishes our minds as much as our bodies.  With that said, we also have to tell you the reality of today … people have the capacity to lie!

People know the potential dangers of treated water (what are they putting in our drinking water), so they assume that what is coming from the well has to be safe.  Think again!

In Kansas, the state allowed residents in two Wichita-area neighborhoods to drink contaminated water for years without telling them, despite warning signs of contamination close to water wells used for drinking, washing and bathing.  What?

During a study for a real estate project, the state actually found dry cleaning chemicals (perchloroethylene) had leached into the ground water but said nothing about it to people who were getting their water from wells.  They did not notify the surrounding areas to allow people to test the water themselves.  But did they have an obligation to tell those citizens who were off the water grid to check their own water sources?  We say YES!  However, residents found out 7 years after those tests that their water was polluted.  7 years!!!  7 days would have been an outrage

So what is the priority, the safety of the people or the businesses who dumped the chemicals?  According to the Wichita Eagle:

“The Kansas Drycleaner Environmental Response Act was passed at the request of the dry cleaning industry to protect the small businesses from the potentially crippling cost of federal involvement. The Environmental Protection Agency, through its Superfund program, can pay to clean up water pollution and then bill any and all companies ever associated with the property to recover its money. Cleaning up pollution can easily cost millions of dollars; state law limits the liability of a dry cleaning shop to $5,000.”

We are not looking for government solutions but instead are looking for government honesty.  We know that there are challenges to providing clean water with a growing population … what we call “prosperity.”  We get it!   But we do not deserve to be lied to, particularly by public officials.  We deserve information to make our choices and when we are deceived we make poor decisions … we act blindly.
We at Boston Clear read about these situations and want to react.  We aspire to provide clean water to our residents not only to help them, but to assure them that someone is looking out for them.  Our customers have grown to rely on us for delivering water that makes us all better.  We plan on delivering on that promise for years to come.
The earth has given this beautiful spring to us and we return it to you.  Whether you are on well water or city water, come to our spring and taste, experience, the difference in what water can make in your life.
We have a truck ready to roll!  So many places, so many needs.

 

Lynnfield, MA Residents – Boston Clear Offers Free Drinking Water Amid Water Concerns

Many of us have assumed that the water that comes from our faucet is safe.  While we think of Flint, MI as an anomaly of a water system gone awry, the USA Today estimated that tens-of-millions in the US have been exposed to unsafe drinking water.  What was a problem for underdeveloped countries has come home to the US.

Now, water issues have hit too close to home and we are here to help.  Residents of Lynnfield, MA expressed concerns about the clarity of its water in May, in early August the town took down a water pumping station amid concerns of e coli in its water.  Now residents have renewed concern about the discoloration of the water, which engineers attribute to iron and manganese content.  A filter is envisioned as a possible solution.  People need clean water today and we have a solution!

On Saturday August 25 from 8:00am – 2:00pm and Sunday August 26 from 8:00am – 2:00pm, all customers who provide a copy of their most recent Lynnfield Center Water District bill will receive up to 5 gallons of free, perfectly drinkable water … all from our spring.  Bring your own, clean container and we will gladly fill it at no charge.  If you need a container, we offer high quality, one-gallon, glass bottles for a $5/each donation.

We are located at 165 Lowell Street, Lynnfield, MA 01940.

Be assured that the water you are drinking is the best for you and your family … get your water from Pocahontas Spring!

Holding Public Officials Accountable For Clean Water

If the water crisis in Flint, Michigan taught us one thing, it was that we simply do no know what we are drinking out of the faucet.  But when the water has contaminates in it, who should be held responsible and how to they go about cleaning it up?

In Flint, the courts are getting involved and prosecutors are bringing cases against public officials for their role in supplying dirty water to residents.  As with many cases of corruption, it is not going to be about the people who contaminated the water, that occurred over a long period of neglect, it is going to be about the person who found out about it and covered it up.  In Michigan, public officials are concerned that they could be held accountable by our judicial system for their neglect.  It would send a strong message.

According to a report in the USA Today, an outbreak of Legionnaires in disease in Michigan killed 12 people as a result of contamination in the water supply:

Legionella bacteria can emerge through misting and cooling systems, triggering a severe form of pneumonia, especially in people with weakened immune systems. The state says there were 90 cases reported to Genesee County Health Department in 2014-15, including 12 deaths. More than half of the people had a common thread: They spent time at McLaren Hospital, which was on the Flint water system.

Our guess is that you have no idea who is in charge of the water supply that feeds your city water supply, their credentials, the treatment facility protocol, the chemical process they use to treat the water and the condition of the pipes that deliver the water to your tap.  It makes you want to go grab a bottled water, but hold on!

Things that we take for granted in life are some of the things that we need to question most.  According to American Prospect, 2015 study by the American Water Works Association found that if federal recommendations on water monitoring were actually followed, as many as 70 percent of water systems relying on lead service lines could be found to be unsafe … In some cases, utilities have failed to keep records of where lead service lines are even located.

Your water supply is important and the more you know about your water, the more you can make decisions about how it interacts with your family’s life.  We should all demand more from our officials, first by having them tell us what is in the water that we are drinking, then asking what actions are taking place to improve it.

The way that we hold people accountable in service to the public is to first find out what they are doing.  Sadly, that is where many citizens fall short.  However, it is easily remedied with a few properly placed questions.

What’s in your water?  Check out Environmental Working Group, a non-profit group whose mission is to empower people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. We have no affiliation with the group but we have found their information very valuable, particularly their blogs on water.  EWG has done extensive analysis on water throughout the country and can provide an independent report on water in your area.  Check it out.

Get information about your water source …. then come to our spring and be confident that our water is the best you can get.