For decades, residents of the Coal Run neighborhood of east-central Ohio had to haul water from wells or collect rainwater to drink, cook, and bathe. Their story might be quaint, except that the decades stretched from the 1950s to the 21st century and, as a federal jury concluded last week, they were denied water services because they were black. The verdict came just weeks after the Cincinnati, Ohio-based Kroger grocery store chain agreed to a $16 million settlement of a suit by black employees who say Kroger blocked the promotions of black employees and paid them less than white workers.
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