The public discussion about CASA Latina’s future home got a little more heated this week, as a Washington D.C. legal group made known its desire to halt development of the publicly funded job and community center in the Central District.
Judicial Watch, whose suit against the city of Herndon, Virginia resulted in the closure of a day labor center there, presented its view on the illegality of day labor sites at a Sept. 24 meeting originally scheduled to come up with a good-neighbor agreement governing the Latino organization’s operations. When they learned Judicial Watch would be there, CASA Latina representatives declined to attend.
Facilitator John Howell did come; he says the next meeting has not been arranged.
“The issue has become so charged and challenging that I want to check in with all the participants,” he says. “I’m going to have conversations with them about whether they’re willing to continue.”
The city contracted Howell, of Cedar River Group, to help both sides arrive at an agreement by the end of October. “CASA Latina wanted to engage in a conversation with the residents,” he says. “It’s a process that the city has supported, and no one wants this to go on forever.”