The exterior demolition of Building 9 – which sits on the DC General campus just 250 feet from where families are living at DC General – has briefly stopped after unsafe levels of lead were found in the ground just outside the building. However, despite refusing to provide a concrete reason for why there is such urgency to demolish Building 9 even while DC General remains occupied, the Bowser Administration has not yet agreed to stop the demolition until the families are all gone.

Over 1000 individuals and 50 organizations so far have signed a petition asking Mayor Bowser to halt demolition until the families in DC General are safely housed elsewhere. We will keep collecting names until Mayor Bowser changes her mind!

Here are a few updates:

  • The DC Department of General Services (DGS) reported to the DC Council and to press late last week that they had found significant amounts of lead, way over legal thresholds, outside of Building 9 and that they are halting demolition until they have removed the lead.  You can check out the Washington Post article that covers this development in the saga.
  • Although it was documented that Building 9 had at one point contained lead and asbestos, the Bowser Administration has claimed for months that all lead had been removed and that demolishing it presents no risk. Councilmember Nadeau sent a letter dated August 7, 2018 laying out some of these problematic communications and asking them to stop the demolition until the families are out. The story has also been covered by Washington City Paper and Curbed DC.
  • On August 9, 2018, seven Councilmembers sent a letter to Mayor Bowser, joining the call to halt demolition at the DC General campus while families remain at the shelter. The letter, which you can read here, was signed by Councilmembers Vince Gray (Ward 7), Trayon White, Sr. (Ward 8), Robert White, Jr. (At-Large), Elissa Silverman (At-Large), David Grosso (At-Large), Mary Cheh (Ward 3), and Charles Allen (Ward 6).

Here’s what you can do to keep the pressure up:

  1. If your organization wants to join the 50 organizations listed below, email Amber Harding at and get added to the list!
  2. Sign the petition as an individual, if you haven’t yet!
  3. Post the petition on Facebook, Twitter, list serves—or just ask 5 friends to sign!
  4. Tweet @MayorBowser with #StopDCGDemo.
  5. Whatever else you can think of!


  1.  ACLU of the District of Columbia
  2. Amara Legal Center
  3. Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization
  4. Ayuda
  5. Bread for the City
  6. Break the Cycle
  7. BYP 100
  8. Chesapeake Climate Action Network
  9. Children’s Law Center
  10. Collective Action for Safe Spaces
  11. DC Abortion Fund
  12. DC Action for Children
  13. DC Bar Pro Bono Center
  14. DC for Democracy
  15. DC for Reasonable Development
  16. DC Fiscal Policy Institute
  17. DC Hunger Solutions
  18. DC Law Students in Court
  19. DC Statehood Green Party
  20. DC Tenants’ Rights Center
  21. DV LEAP
  22. Empower DC
  23. Equal Rights Center
  24. Fair Budget Coalition
  25. The Father McKenna Center
  26. Good Faith Communities Coalition
  27. Homeless Children’s Playtime Project
  28. Jewish Voice for Peace DC Metro
  29. Jews United for Justice
  30. Justice First
  31. Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia
  32. Legal Counsel for the Elderly
  33. LinkUp
  34. Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America
  35. National Coalition for the Homeless
  36. National Housing Law Project
  37. National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty
  38. Natural Resources Defense Council
  39. Network for Victim Recovery of DC
  40. ONE DC
  41. Positive Force DC
  42. The Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia
  43. Public Justice Center
  44. Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law
  45. SOME, Inc. (So Others Might Eat)
  46. Stop Police Terror Project DC
  47. Tzedek DC
  48. Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs
  49. Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless
  50. We Are Family Senior Outreach Network