Affluent parts of Jackson struggle with sewage backup

Published: Apr. 19, 2022 at 6:33 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Some residents in Northeast Jackson have been dealing with the horrendous smell of raw sewage in their yards for over a year now, and they don’t know when the stench will leave.

In the affluent neighborhoods just minutes away from The Country Club of Jackson, residents are not exempt from having to deal with raw sewage sitting in their yard. It’s so bad, one woman actually fell into a sewage hole while trying to fix the problem.

“I was trying to prop my fence up with my three nephews and there’s a hole back there that’s big enough to put a horse in and I slipped and fell into the hole. Now I’m having to go to the chiropractor to get adjusted because I’m having problems with my neck and with my hip,” resident Mary Thompson said.

Since March 2021, Mary Thompson and her neighbor Niya Hopkins-Archie have had raw sewage flood into their yards, homes, and pool.

“I was not able to sit in my backyard. Not one day in the summer last year. And I haven’t been able to to spend Easter, I had planned on spending Easter with my family and it’s really been... sorry,” Thompson explained.

Hopkins-Archie said when the problem first began, the city came out and told her a tree root had wrapped around her sewage pipes and she would have to replace it. Over $3,000 later, and the problem continued.

“Since January has gotten significantly worse, it hasn’t come back into my home, but it’s all over in that corner in the backyard. And right where her clean out is. And it’s like tissue and waste, condoms, tampons, everything is coming out,” Hopkins-Archie said.

Hopkins-Archie said her daughter can’t play in the backyard because of field rats, mosquitoes, and water moccasins living in the filth.

To address the problem, Thompson said she wrote letters to her councilman, Ashby Foote, Jackson’s Sewage Department, and the EPA. She also spoke to Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba personally, but she said nothing was ever done about the problem.

“He said that he would definitely get this problem solved and all the promises he made to me. And I called him two Sundays ago because the sewage was coming up in my pool and he told me the exact same words,” Thompson said.

According to the city, they are aware of the issue and are trying to “secure additional funding to bolster our ability to upgrade and replace outdated infrastructure.”

Thompson and Archie both agreed that they have done everything they can to fix the problem and now it’s the city’s turn to step up.

Want more WLBT news in your inbox? Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.

Copyright 2022 WLBT. All rights reserved.