Petition sparks change in DC food delivery services

WASHINGTON An online petition calling for food delivery companies to expand their D.C. service areas to include neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River has resulted in change.

As of April 27, residents in Wards 7 and 8 will be able to order food through DoorDash, Caviar and Postmates three online-based companies that previously excluded delivery to some, if not all, of these D.C. neighborhoods.

Southeast D.C. resident Latoya Watson, 31, launched the petition in early April. It received hundreds of signatures and comments from residents across the city.

In the petition Watson writes, “Black people deserve quality food and equal service. I’m raising my hand to call for that change.”

According to census data from D.C.’s Office of Planning, Wards 7 and 8 have the highest percentage of black residents — 94.9 percent and 93.5 percent, respectively.

“Communities of color, especially the east-of-the-river communities, have just been underserved and neglected for so long, and that’s not OK,” Watson told WTOP in an earlier interview.

“If we don’t speak up, that neglect will continue to happen.”

Postmates responded to the petition first, announcing expanded service to Wards 7 and 8 on April 23, followed by Caviar on April 26.

A Caviar spokesperson told WTOP, “After hearing from diners, we turned on delivery service to Wards 7 and 8 earlier this week. We look forward to exploring other ways to engage with District residents and businesses as we continue to expand our service in the D.C. area.”

DoorDash previously serviced some areas of Ward 7, but now will deliver to all of Wards 7 and 8.

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