NTEU Chapter 336 (National Park Service-National Capital Region) is working with Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) to protect NPS employees and the public as crowds continue to gather at national monuments in Washington, D.C.
At the urging of Chapter 336 President Stephanie Marrone, Norton wrote to the NPS Acting Director asking that the Washington Monument visitor center temporarily close during the pandemic. The next day, NPS announced it would shutter the Washington Monument indefinitely due to the pandemic.
With crowds still gathering at other national monuments, the chapter followed up with Norton’s office to voice additional concerns about the health of NPS employees and the general public. On Tuesday, Norton urged NPS Acting Director David Vela to go one step further and close the chambers of the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials. NPS has already closed most of the indoor property on the National Mall.
“Closure would protect the public and NPS employees, including U.S. Park Police officers,” Norton wrote. “Federal agencies need to lead by example and do everything possible to flatten the curve.”
While the chapter awaits a response from Acting Director Vela, Marrone continues to communicate with concerned members on a regular basis.
“I know how stressed out you all are, particularly those of you who are on ‘the frontline’ like I am,” Marrone, an NPS Park Guide, wrote in a member message. “Please know that your chapter leaders will continue to do our best to get you information. Wash your hands, don’t touch your face and be well.”