Officials stall packing students’ rooms after protests, curfews block workers’ travel

The University has delayed packing students’ belongings because of curfews and barricades the District imposed in response to a week of protests over police brutality.

Officials delayed packing rooms in Shenkman, Strong and JBKO halls, the Small Townhouses and Greek Row after citywide curfews and “rolling barricades” blocked workers from returning home from campus, according to an email sent Friday to residents of those residence halls. Seth Weinshel, the assistant dean of housing and financial services, and Stewart Robinette, the assistant dean of residential engagement, said in the email that administrators postponed all weekend work and hope to continue work Monday.

“Our number one priority at all times is the safety of our community, and we want to thank you ahead of time for your patience and understanding for our decision to delay the packing for a couple of days,” the email states.

Mayor Muriel Bowser launched a series of citywide curfews that forced the public off D.C. streets each night from Sunday through Wednesday this past week.

Workers from Interstate Moving & Storage, a company officials contracted to pack, store and ship belongings to students, were twice blocked from returning home from campus despite leaving before the city’s curfew took effect, according to the email. The email states the Metropolitan Police Department alerted the University of this weekend’s protests, which prompted the delay “for the safety of both the Interstate employees” and GW’s Campus Living team, which manages housing on campus.

Officials will provide affected students with any additional updates, the email states.

The University announced late last month that Interstate would pack rooms in JBKO and Strong halls starting June 2. The announcement stated the moving team would have shipped students’ items to the company’s warehouse by June 10 for Strong Hall rooms and June 12 for JBKO rooms.

The University notified students of its decision to pack and store residence hall rooms in March after the majority of students cleared campus to switch to online classes in light of the COVID-19 outbreak earlier in the month. Since then, students have voiced complaints with the moving process’s coordination in its early stages.

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