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Mayor Bowser Celebrates DPW Employees, Kicks Off National Public Works Week with Citywide Graffiti Cleaning Tour

Monday, May 16, 2022

(Washington, DC) Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser is celebrating employees at the Department of Public Works (DPW) as the agency kicked off a weeklong observance of National Public Works Week (NPWW), taking place from May 16-20. DPW kicked off a week of activities with a citywide graffiti cleaning blitz.

“No matter what is going on in our city, DPW employees are out in our community, taking care of neighborhoods,” said Mayor Bowser. “Whether they’re providing regular services, responding to the weather, supporting events and demonstrations, they’re always there – in person – keeping DC moving forward. Take some time this week to show your thanks.”

NPWW is sponsored by the American Public Works Association (APWA) and celebrates the work of public works personnel throughout North America. DPW’s bevy of activities is designed to showcase the diverse work of the agency and celebrate the employees who work 24/7 to keep the city clean:

  • Graffiti Wipe-Out Blitz: Starting May 16 through July 1, DPW’s graffiti abatement team will power wash or paint walls throughout the District to remove graffiti and will use a special solvent to scrape off illegal posters and stickers. In earlier graffiti wipe-out blitzes, DPW crews eradicated nearly 1,000 graffiti markings and more than 2,000 posters and stickers from public spaces citywide.
  • MuralsDC Tour: On May 17, the agency will partner with Big Bus to tour more than a dozen murals created under its agency’s MuralsDC program, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary.
  • Litter Prevention Pilot: The week will wrap with the launch of a litter prevention pilot, designed to empower Wards 7 and 8 residents to actively collaborate with DPW for community clean ups and provide litter reduction strategies to help maintain their communities and public space.

In addition to NPWW, Mayor Bowser will also be celebrating Infrastructure Week this week. Throughout Infrastructure Week, Mayor Bowser will highlight investments in infrastructure and initiatives focused on building a more connected, resilient, and equitable DC. In March, Mayor Bowser announced the creation of the DC Build Back Better Infrastructure Task Force, which will advise on priority projects to be funded through President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The Task Force is made up of experts from District agencies and external partners who will ensure the District’s effectiveness in securing and deploying federal dollars while creating projects that will impact residents across the District and generations of Washingtonians to come.

“It’s fitting that these national observances are held simultaneously given the critical nature of all these industries,” said Interim Director DPW Mike Carter, who will hold a special appreciation day event for his employees on May 18. “Cities would not be able to function safely or effectively without the work performed by these employees, and I celebrate them all.”


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