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Feds' hiring freeze closes Declaration of Independence site

Posted March 15

— President Donald Trump's hiring freeze has led to the closure of a replica of the home where Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence.

Union representatives tell Philly.com (http://bit.ly/2nqm6wK) the so-called Declaration House is among seven sites at Independence National Historic Park that have been closed. David Fitzpatrick, head of the union that represents park employees, says the hiring stoppage also shuttered exhibits at the site of Benjamin Franklin's home and print shop.

Fitzpatrick also says bathrooms inside the park have been closed because the agency cannot hire new workers.

Lauren Hitt, spokeswoman from the mayor's office, says the staffing changes take away educational opportunities from students.

Major sites, including Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell's home, remain open. But Fitzpatrick says union members are bracing for further cuts.

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