The Capitol Police Board has issued an emergency declaration over the People’s Convoy trucker protest that has arrived in DC.
House Sergeant at Arms William Walker announced the emergency declaration as the convoy arrived on Sunday.
“The Capitol Police Board has issued an emergency declaration to ensure that the US Capitol police are able to operate and respond as necessary,” Walker said in a letter to all members of Congress and staff, CNN reports.
Walker suggested people try to work remotely or take public transit while the convoy is protesting.
Walker also said the Committee on House Administration had “determined that extraordinary circumstances exist to permit use of official funds to reimburse short-term lodging expenses in the Washington, D.C., area for certain Members and staff,” per the report.
Washington County, Maryland, Sheriff Doug Mullendore has said that they have not had any issues with the convoy while they were in Hagerstown to rally earlier in the day.
“There are at least four convoys that have converged in Hagerstown and are staying at the Hagerstown Speedway,” he said. “There have been no problems and we are just monitoring things. We are working closely with the Maryland State Police.”
Mullendore added, “They have been very respectful and have caused no problems here.”
Virginia State Police spokesperson Corinne Geller told CNN that the agency had “been in contact with various groups’ organizers to ensure their understanding of Virginia traffic laws.” Law enforcement’s goal, she said, was to “mitigate the impact of additional traffic volume on already congested roadways and Northern Virginia communities.”
In a press release about the convoy’s goals, organizers wrote that “the message of The People’s Convoy is simple. The last 23 months of the COVID-19 pandemic have been a rough road for all Americans to travel: spiritually, emotionally, physically, and – not least – financially. With the advent of the vaccine and workable therapeutic agents, along with the hard work of so many sectors that contributed to declining COVID-19 cases and severity of illness, it is now time to re-open the country. The average American worker needs to be able to end-run the economic hardships of the last two years, and get back to the business of making bread – so they can pay their rents and mortgages and help jumpstart this economy. To that end, it’s time for elected officials to work with the blue collar and white-collar workers of America and restore accountability and liberty – by lifting all mandates and ending the state of emergency – as COVID is well-in-hand now, and Americans need to get back to work in a free and unrestricted manner.”
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