On November 30, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited by DCist.
The neighborhoods around the arena are particularly impacted by federal workers being slow to return to offices, says Yesim Sayin, Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center, due to the presence of federal agencies like the FBI and the U.S. Government Accountability Office.
“Office buildings around Chinatown are largely empty. And in the downtown area, which includes Chinatown, [even] on the busiest days, half the workers do not show up,” Sayin says.
There’s also been a significant uptick in crime across the city, including in Chinatown. Violent crime was up 36% in the neighborhood as of August, according to D.C. Police.
Sayin cites the theory that the main deterrence of crime is the threat of being caught. If there are fewer people around, there is less chance of being caught which can “embolden illegal activity,” Sayin says.