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Community Foodworks Alleges ANC Rep Used Racial Slur, “tar baby”, at the Columbia Heights Farmers Market

by Prince Of Petworth September 27, 2017 at 12:45 pm 0

Photo by PoPville flickr user Mr.TinDC

“Dear PoPville,

I’m reaching out to share information about a recent incident involving ANC1A06 Commissioner Richard DuBeshter.

Letter Regarding ANC1A06 (PDF)

Attached to this email, you’ll find the letter we have sent to ANC1A, Councilwoman Nadeau, and the Office of Advisory Neighborhood Commissions describing the incident. I have redacted the name of the community member about whom Commissioner DuBeshter was speaking from the letter. The Councilwoman’s office responded with concern, but noted they have little power over ANCs. ANC1A responded by thanking us for making the Commission aware and offered no further information. We have yet to hear from the Office of ANCs.”

Community Foodworks writes this letter to inform you of an incident that occurred between Margaret “Maggie” Frey, our Market Manager, and Commissioner Richard DuBeshter on Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at the Columbia Heights Farmers Market located on the Columbia Heights Civic Plaza.

Commissioner DuBeshter came to speak with Maggie regarding an issue with the electricity connection on the Civic Plaza. In the course of their conversation, he referenced a community member who often volunteers at the market, [a community member], whom Commr. DuBeshter knows as [nickname]. Maggie mentioned that she has noticed that [she] has fallen on hard times and has appeared at the market looking dishevelled recently. Commr. DuBeshter responded by saying, “She’s a mess! She looks like a tar baby!”

We are appalled by the Commissioner’s words. That he would use a racial slur to describe a community member is shocking and disgusting. It is even more disturbing that Commissioner DuBeshter is using this language during polite conversation in a public setting and in his official capacity. This behavior flagrantly violates the ANC 1A Code of Conduct clauses 5.7, 7.1.b, 7.1.d, 7.3 and 7.7.

Letter Regarding ANC1A06 (PDF)

Ed. Note: Upon receiving the letter yesterday I sent an email to Commissioner DuBeshter asking for comment and he replied:

“Thank you for bringing it to my attention. I intend to address the allegations right away.”

I have not received a further follow up today but will update the post with his comment should he send one.


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