Local News/Neighborhoods

Black Friday protest at H st Wal-mart demands $15 an hour and full time hours

On Black Friday, the 27th of November, protesters showed up in front of the H st Wal-Mart. They were demanding that Wal-Mart pay all of their "associates" $15 an hour and offer all of them full-time hours.A speaker at the DC protest cited workers having to go hungry and not eat in order to pay rent, due to the poverty wages Wal-Mart pays.

Video-a Wal-Mart worker speaks of having to go hungry to pay rent

Going hungry to pay rent on Wal-Mart's wages

Mayor Bowser begins raids on homeless camps

On the 20th of November, Mayor Bowser carried out her threat to begin DPW "cleanup" raids on homeless camps with an attack on the camp in Rock Creek Park near Va Ave. A trash truck, a box truck, and a shelter van were brought in, along with at least one police van for security. Recent Dept of Justice opinions opposing prosecution of the homeless may have deterred forcible removal, but it was clear that some belongings other than the tents were either being thrown in the trash or hauled away to a government warehouse. As of 7PM, many tents were still standing, and it appeared that most residents had refused the Mayor's demands to move to city-controlled shelters. The shelters are known for everything from metal detectors to bedbugs, and some refuse to use them.

Cops harass Black Lives Matter activists at SE home

On the 8th of November, reports emerged on Twitter that DC police from the 7D station shined lights into an activist home in Anacostia, and screamed at the women inside. Two cops showed up and shined lights into the house, then started screaming threats when asked why they were doing this. Cops also pulled over someone leaving the BlackJoySunday event that was being held at the house that evening.

Video originally posted to Twitter by Taylor Griffin

Cops harass Black Lives Matter activists at SE home

Proposed $600/month rent hike at Mt Vernon Plaza apartments draws protest vigil

Mt Vernon Plaza at 10th and M sts is owned by Bush Construction Companies, the same VA landlord who is seeking to evict all residents of Museum Square in Chinatown. At Mt Vernon Plaza Bush is attempting to shake down tenants for an extra $600 a month in rent, a 50% increase. On the 26th of October, tenants held a vigil outside reinforced by activists from the Black Lives Matter movement and other community activists. Bush Construction Companies was warned that evictions would require carrying people-including community activists-physically out of the building.

Video-Reverend Hagler speaking on gentrification and displacement as racism-including a direct comparison to the displacement of and theft of land from Native Americans

Rev Hagler at Mt Vernon Plaza

Museum Square residents defy landlord's deadline, take over Chinatown streets

Museum Square owner Bush Properties has defied DC law and told residents of Museum Square at 401 K street that they would no longer participate in Section 8, instead issuing vouchers they demanded be used elsewhere and asking them to be out by Oct 1. On the last day of September, at least half the building backed by supporters from as far away as Boston instead participated in a rally defying these demands and emphasising they intended to exercise their legal right to stay put. Furious with Bush Properties for illegally refusing to accept their vouchers, residents took to the streets, but not in the way Bush Properties had hoped.

Update Oct 1 4PM: Bush Properties now reported to be accepting the "enhanced" vouchers one day after protest and expiration of deadline.

Video highlights of the march plus analysis

THIS is now the way Bush Properties intended to put their tenants in the streets!

Chinatown rising against mass eviction

Chinatown mass eviction update: landlord expels activists invited by tenants

On the 19th of September, local activist Sam Jeweler reported that security guards at Chinatown's Museum Square apartment complex expelled a group of ten tenant canvassers he was part of. The canvassers were present at the request of some of the tenants to inform others of their rights against Landlord Bush Co's planned mass eviction of everyone in the building.

Racist FOX News, other media push crime stories to counter Black Lives Matter

All this Summer FOX News has led almost every broadcast with lurid crime stories. Just yesterday someone shooting out the back window of their own car in an argument became the lead story on FOX, complete with white tourists saying they felt safer with so many cops in that part of town. This drumbeat has been in most of the major media, but FOX especially ever since the Battle of Baltimore was fought over the murder of Freddie Grey by police. There is the real possiblity that this is an organized effort to rebuild support for police on the part of media outlets owned by the wealthy whites whom police protect.

Overflow crowd at BB&P event to save Museum Square from mass eviction

Museum Square at 4th and K sts NW is one of the last affordable housing projects in Chinatown, containing nearly half the remaining Chinese community there plus many African-American residents. The owner of the building (Bush Properties in Va) wants to replace it with condos and luxury apartments for the rich. As part of the campaign to save the building and block the evictions, Busboys and Poets at nearby 5th and K st, held a party for Museum Square residents and supporters on July 20. The room was packed to standing room only.

Museum Square tenants rally against mass eviction in Chinatown

The residents of Museum Square, one of the last Section 8 rentals in Chinatown are facing mass eviction followed by demolition and condo construction. Bush Companies (of Williamsburg, Va.), the landlord, offers only an option to buy the building for nearly ten times what the DC government assessed it as being worth for property taxes. On the 23ed of June, the tenants staged a mass protest against the planned evictions. They were backed by the National Alliance of HUD Tenants.

Video highlights of the rally (2 min)