With music pumping through the speakers and temperatures exceeding 100 degrees, hundreds of D.C. residents from the Stoddert Terrace public housing development were treated to a rare sight: officials from the D.C. police, fire, emergency medical services and District 14’s own Local 1456 doing the electric slide.
D.C. residents came out by the hundreds as part of the District’s annual community engagement event, Peace in the Park, in Southeast Washington, DC. The event offers under-resourced residents access to mental health professionals, free HIV screenings, and back-to-school supplies. Attendees who braved the extreme heat also received complimentary food, drinks, ice cream, face painting, and performances by local artists.
“Every year AFGE comes together with different community service providers to work as one to help residents in D.C.,” said AFGE 1456 Local President Deandre Tyler. “We want residents to come out, connect with the community, and promote peace and solidarity within the neighborhood.”
Peace in the Park has been held annually for the last decade by AFGE Local 1456, and this year they were joined by the East River Family Strengthening Collaborative, the D.C. Family Court Social Services Division, the Proactive Public Safety Committee, and AFGE Locals 727,1410, Counsel 1, and members of AFGE District 14.
“We put on this event because we need to be a part of the change we want to see in our communities, and also the change residents want to see in their neighborhood,” said AFGE Local 1456 Steward Audrey Smith. “We want to provide D.C. residents with the resources and valuable access to information they need, and to make sure that these children are prepared for the school year ahead,” she added.