A message from the Georgetown BID in today’s newsletter:
What began as a reopening has turned into a reckoning.
The mission of our organization is to keep Georgetown safe, clean, accessible, and economically strong. Our members are the business owners and employees in Georgetown’s commercial district, and we care about them deeply. A global pandemic has rocked their world and tested our mission to serve them in every way. Now many of those businesses – on the brink of reopening – are also dealing with the damage done over several nights of unrest.
All of that is true, and hard, and disheartening. And still, the mission of this moment is greater.
It would feel inauthentic to suddenly use a newsletter intended for events, promotions, and puns as a platform for promises of change, and lessons already learned.
Our staff loves Georgetown and loves DC. We’re city planners, communicators, event specialists, marketers, and economic development directors. We know how to do those things. We don’t, however, have a playbook for this – how to operate during the pause of a pandemic, and the push for a country in which Black lives matter. Not yet.
It would be convenient to know the path forward in time for this newsletter, but a week of undeniable awareness doesn’t magically produce solutions to the divides that have surrounded DC’s oldest neighborhood for 269 years. We have to work to carve that path forward, while continuing to support our members, communicate with them – and you – regularly, and keep Georgetown clean and safe.
A pandemic and a protest may feel at odds to us, simultaneously reopening and rebuilding, but we’ll take our cues from the cadence of both.
We’ll pause – to listen and learn and collect ourselves – and then push to change. And we’ll start again.
The Georgetown BID