A group of Howard University Students have been protesting the living conditions in their dorms for over a week.
Using the Twitter hashtag #BlackburnTakeover, students organized a sit-in at the Blackburn Center, to bring attention to the horrid and unlivable conditions they have been forced into.
Students have used social media, as well as traditional media to share first-hand accounts of the issues that plagued the campus.
Photos of mold piling up in air vents and behind hanging photographs on walls were shared thousands of times on the internet. Students complained about roaches, rats and share stories of their friends being hospitalized because of mold exposure.
As the students continue to get louder and more unified, the world is taking notice.
Rapper Gucci Mane refused to perform at Howard University’s homecoming and announced he stood in solidarity with the protesters on Campus.
While on the Howard homecoming stage, rapper Lil Durk left the stage after only performing a few songs. In a TikTok video taken from the crowd, Durk can be heard explaining to fans that he was supposed to do more songs but wasn’t feeling the experience.
“Aye look. We were supposed to do more songs but this sh*t sound so bogus, I don’t even feel this sh*t for real,” said Durk. “I appreciate y’all for f*cking with us..”
Durk immediately walked off stage to a crowd of boos.
Howard University officials aren’t feeling all of this unwanted attention and seem to be feeling the pressure. Students recently took shots at Howard University’s 40-year contract with Corvias, the property management company hired to provide maintenance for the dorms. In a video posted to Twitter, a student calls Corvias a “very slum lordy company” and explains her issues with the company.
“They don’t respond to maintenance requests. I requested my air filter be cleaned multiple times, it hasn’t been cleaned or changed. There is also mold growing from the exit sign outside of my dorm.”
But Corvias defended its record in a statement to The Guardian.
A spokesperson for the company said, “A recent inspection discovered mold in less than a tenth of 1% of rooms – 34 out of 3,300. We encourage students to report service needs as soon as possible by contacting the front desk attendant, by phone, or online.”
Howard officials also recently announced that they are placing all res halls in “hyper-care,” and go above and beyond to clean HVAC systems, change filters and be exceptionally responsive to maintenance needs going forward.
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