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Gray Administration Outraged Over Sexual Assault Reports Involving SYEP Participants

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Washington, DC – Two youth in the Summer Youth Employment Program allegedly were subjected to acts of sexual misconduct. The alleged incidents occurred over the past two days.

“These alleged acts are extremely alarming, disappointing and reprehensible,” said Mayor Vincent C. Gray. “We take very seriously any allegations of improper conduct and criminal acts against our youth. We will not tolerate, for a moment, the victimization of our young people in the Summer Youth Employment Program who have the right to expect this to be a wholesome, healthy and enriching work experience.”

In light of these recent incidents, which were reported Wednesday, June 29 and Friday, July 1, Department of Employment Services (DOES) Acting Director Lisa Mallory says SYEP staff will be reemphasizing to the youth participants to review the safety measures learned during orientation and to always report any improper or questionable behavior. Additional safety sessions will be conducted throughout the six-week program.

Moreover, supervisors are being reminded that they must remain vigilant in their supervisory responsibilities, to treat all reported concerns seriously and to immediately reach out to the appropriate authority as necessary.

At this point, the incidents are under investigation, and further inquiries should be directed to the Metropolitan Police Department. If the allegations are found to be valid, the administration will seek prosecution to the fullest extent of the law.