Someone in My Building Is Hosting Parties. Should I Report Him? | Ask the Rev. | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Someone in My Building Is Hosting Parties. Should I Report Him?

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Dear Reverend,

I live in an apartment building with 12 units. For the most part everyone has been great about staying away from each other, but one of the people in my building has been having a bunch of people over about once a week. I'm concerned for my safety, but also I'm not sure if this is something I can or should report, or how to even go about that. What should I do?

Nervous Neighbor
(female, 28)

Dear Nervous Neighbor,

I'm assuming you don't want to approach this person, but have you left a note on their door expressing your concerns? Perhaps you could talk to your landlord and have them send a message to all tenants outlining the basics of the governor's stay-at-home order. Dropping a dime on a neighbor is never all that cool, so it would be lovely if a friendly reminder could do the trick. However, if this person is dumb enough to host parties during a pandemic, you might need to take more drastic action.

The Vermont State Police website, vsp.vermont.gov, has a page devoted to "Stay Home, Stay Safe" enforcement. It says that enforcement of the executive order should "be handled primarily through education and voluntary compliance." It also recommends that anyone witnessing any kind of noncompliance should call their local law enforcement agency.

So I gave my local police department a jingle and asked whether a person should report parties or gatherings. Seems there might be a little gray area, because the person I spoke with didn't say yes right away and asked me if there was a noise complaint. When I explained that I was more concerned about the spread of the virus, she said it would be best to call when the party is happening, and an officer would be dispatched to assess the situation.

I imagine a visit from Johnny Law will put an end to the pesky parties. In the meantime, wash your hands, don't touch your face and stay at home as best you can.

Good luck and God bless,

The Reverend

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