Following the discovery of a noose at the construction site of former President Barack Obama’s Presidential library, the operation has been paused.
The noose was discovered at the Chicago site, with Lakeside Alliance, the partnership of black-owned construction businesses, reporting the matter to the police.
A $100,000 reward is being offered to find the culprit, with Lakeside Alliance explaining in a statement that they would provide “any assistance required to identify those responsible.”
In its Thursday (November 10) statement, the Lakeside Alliance expressed its “zero tolerance” policy for “bias or hate on our worksite.”
The group continued, relaying that “Anti-bias training” is a part of its onboarding process and “reiterated during site-wide meetings.”.
However, the group noted that in light of the discovery, it would be “suspending all operations onsite in order to provide another series of these trainings.”
The statement continued, calling the actions of whoever carried out the events “cowardice” and “shameless,” expressing their belief the incident was merely an attention-grabbing stunt designed to “divide.”
The conglomerate then reiterated its commitment to its workforce, saying that “protecting the health and safety of our workforce” is the company’s priority.
A spokesperson for the Chicago Police Department confirmed the incident had been reported to law enforcement and is being investigated.
Lara Cooper, a spokeswoman for the Lakeside Alliance, refused to comment on whether the firm believes a worker was involved. Cooper also didn’t comment on how the pause would affect the construction timeline, as the library is set to open in 2025.
The former President’s charitable foundation also released a statement about the incident.