Even With Back Pay, Feds Continue to Be Hit Hard With No Paychecks Amid Longest Government Shutdown in U.S. History


ALEXANDRIA, Va. (January 11, 2019) – In response to Congress passing back pay legislation and with the partial government shutdown nearing the longest in U.S. history, NARFE National President Ken Thomas issued the following statement:

“As we embark on the longest government shutdown in our nation’s history, today marks the first missed paycheck for more than 800,000 federal employees including FBI agents, border patrol officials, TSA officers, National Weather Service forecasters, air traffic controllers, service members of the Coast Guard and many, many more. Like all hardworking Americans, public servants don’t sign up to work without compensation, nor do they sign up to be collateral damage in political debates that hold the country hostage.

“With lawmakers admitting there is no end in sight to this shutdown, furloughed and unpaid working federal employees can take some comfort in knowing that Congress has passed legislation providing them with back pay once this political nightmare is over. Yet, even that is not an immediate solution. Federal employees are scrambling to make arrangements for unpaid bills, including tapping their retirement accounts. Evictions are becoming a real possibility, medical issues go untended, local economies are suffering and services to citizens have ceased as workloads pile up.

“We turn to elected officials to make tough decisions with a thorough understanding of how policies, government programs and laws affect the public. At a time when the Trump administration touts positive economic gains, this shutdown – about to be the longest in history – has gone on long enough. The time is past for resolving this. For the good of our country, lawmakers must put aside political differences and find a mutually agreeable path forward that will allow federal employees to do what they do best: serve the American people.”

Effects of the shutdown
Federal employees serve the American people across the country. As they cannot work or either work without pay, they face real risks to their financial wellbeing. Below are several personal accounts from NARFE members regarding this unnecessary shutdown.

“I’m a single mother who is responsible for my mortgage, credit cards and putting food on the table. Now I’m not sure how to do any of that. Getting paid or not getting paid is the worst thing you can do to a human being. There was a time that it was an honor to work for the government. I’m going on 25 years myself, but with all this turmoil, sometimes I wonder why I chose this path.”

Department of the Treasury employee
Philadelphia

“I just bought a house in 2017 and have a toddler and my husband and I barely make ends meet with his two jobs and mine, with my job being the higher paid one in our household. With this shutdown I have experienced no sympathy from my mortgage company and will now incur late charges on a mortgage. I’m almost got back on track, and will now be behind on my other bills.

Department of Justice employee
Tucson, Arizona

“I was in the process of moving into my first full-time permanent position with the NPS when the shutdown began. I bought a house in Texas, incurred thousands and thousands of dollars in moving expenses and moved into my new home. Because I no longer live in Arizona, I can't apply for unemployment in Arizona and since I have not officially begun work in Texas I can't apply for unemployment there, either. I have a house payment due on February 1 and have medical issues that need treatment. I am concerned that I will fall through the cracks because of the state of my transition at the time of the shutdown.”

National Park Service employee
Ganado, Arizona

“Prior to being furloughed, I was working with a non-profit company to help them devise a scheduling system for their manufacturing production. The company provides vocational rehabilitation to persons with significant disabilities, and its work includes the production of apparel for commercial concerns and the Defense Logistics Agency. We were only two weeks away from introducing a solution when the shutdown occurred.”

NIST employee
Gaithersburg, Maryland

“I am a seasonal [employee] depending on my paycheck to cover expenses. It’s hard enough to find a job in our area that pays more than minimum wage or is not strictly tied to the tourist industry and therefore requiring evening or weekend hours. Our district includes one of the most visited National Recreation Areas in the nation. The furlough means no fees are being collected, restrooms are not cleaned and ramps to ice fishing access are unplowed. All in all, this furlough has had no positive affect on local economy or morale.”

U.S. Forest Service employee
Granby, Colorado

“After 42 years of service, I was scheduled to retire on January 3, 2019. I have been removed from the employment rolls yet my retirement paperwork cannot be processed. I am neither an employee, nor am I retired. I can't apply for unemployment. There is no income coming into my household for the foreseeable future.”

USDA employee
South Hampton, New Jersey
 

                                                                         # # # 

The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE), one of America’s oldest and largest associations, was founded in 1921 with the mission of protecting the earned rights and benefits of America’s active and retired federal workers. The largest federal employee/retiree organization, NARFE represents the interests of 5 million current and future federal annuitants, spouses and survivors.

CONTACT:
Jill Talley
NARFE Deputy Director, Public Relations
jtalley@narfe.org
(703)838-7760

National Active and Retired

FEDERAL EMPLOYEES Association

NARFE (National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association) 606 N. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314, Phone: (703) 838-7760, Fax: (703) 838-7785.

 

This is the only website that reflects the official opinions and positions of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE). Opinions and/or positions that appear on any other site bearing NARFE's name or seal are not necessarily those of NARFE. Click here for Privacy Statement.   NARFE has been certified by Dun & Bradstreet.

Even With Back Pay, Feds Continue to Be Hit Hard With No Paychecks Amid Longest Government Shutdown in U.S. History


ALEXANDRIA, Va. (January 11, 2019) – In response to Congress passing back pay legislation and with the partial government shutdown nearing the longest in U.S. history, NARFE National President Ken Thomas issued the following statement:

“As we embark on the longest government shutdown in our nation’s history, today marks the first missed paycheck for more than 800,000 federal employees including FBI agents, border patrol officials, TSA officers, National Weather Service forecasters, air traffic controllers, service members of the Coast Guard and many, many more. Like all hardworking Americans, public servants don’t sign up to work without compensation, nor do they sign up to be collateral damage in political debates that hold the country hostage.

“With lawmakers admitting there is no end in sight to this shutdown, furloughed and unpaid working federal employees can take some comfort in knowing that Congress has passed legislation providing them with back pay once this political nightmare is over. Yet, even that is not an immediate solution. Federal employees are scrambling to make arrangements for unpaid bills, including tapping their retirement accounts. Evictions are becoming a real possibility, medical issues go untended, local economies are suffering and services to citizens have ceased as workloads pile up.

“We turn to elected officials to make tough decisions with a thorough understanding of how policies, government programs and laws affect the public. At a time when the Trump administration touts positive economic gains, this shutdown – about to be the longest in history – has gone on long enough. The time is past for resolving this. For the good of our country, lawmakers must put aside political differences and find a mutually agreeable path forward that will allow federal employees to do what they do best: serve the American people.”

Effects of the shutdown
Federal employees serve the American people across the country. As they cannot work or either work without pay, they face real risks to their financial wellbeing. Below are several personal accounts from NARFE members regarding this unnecessary shutdown.

“I’m a single mother who is responsible for my mortgage, credit cards and putting food on the table. Now I’m not sure how to do any of that. Getting paid or not getting paid is the worst thing you can do to a human being. There was a time that it was an honor to work for the government. I’m going on 25 years myself, but with all this turmoil, sometimes I wonder why I chose this path.”

Department of the Treasury employee
Philadelphia

“I just bought a house in 2017 and have a toddler and my husband and I barely make ends meet with his two jobs and mine, with my job being the higher paid one in our household. With this shutdown I have experienced no sympathy from my mortgage company and will now incur late charges on a mortgage. I’m almost got back on track, and will now be behind on my other bills.

Department of Justice employee
Tucson, Arizona

“I was in the process of moving into my first full-time permanent position with the NPS when the shutdown began. I bought a house in Texas, incurred thousands and thousands of dollars in moving expenses and moved into my new home. Because I no longer live in Arizona, I can't apply for unemployment in Arizona and since I have not officially begun work in Texas I can't apply for unemployment there, either. I have a house payment due on February 1 and have medical issues that need treatment. I am concerned that I will fall through the cracks because of the state of my transition at the time of the shutdown.”

National Park Service employee
Ganado, Arizona

“Prior to being furloughed, I was working with a non-profit company to help them devise a scheduling system for their manufacturing production. The company provides vocational rehabilitation to persons with significant disabilities, and its work includes the production of apparel for commercial concerns and the Defense Logistics Agency. We were only two weeks away from introducing a solution when the shutdown occurred.”

NIST employee
Gaithersburg, Maryland

“I am a seasonal [employee] depending on my paycheck to cover expenses. It’s hard enough to find a job in our area that pays more than minimum wage or is not strictly tied to the tourist industry and therefore requiring evening or weekend hours. Our district includes one of the most visited National Recreation Areas in the nation. The furlough means no fees are being collected, restrooms are not cleaned and ramps to ice fishing access are unplowed. All in all, this furlough has had no positive affect on local economy or morale.”

U.S. Forest Service employee
Granby, Colorado

“After 42 years of service, I was scheduled to retire on January 3, 2019. I have been removed from the employment rolls yet my retirement paperwork cannot be processed. I am neither an employee, nor am I retired. I can't apply for unemployment. There is no income coming into my household for the foreseeable future.”

USDA employee
South Hampton, New Jersey
 

                                                                         # # # 

The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE), one of America’s oldest and largest associations, was founded in 1921 with the mission of protecting the earned rights and benefits of America’s active and retired federal workers. The largest federal employee/retiree organization, NARFE represents the interests of 5 million current and future federal annuitants, spouses and survivors.

CONTACT:
Jill Talley
NARFE Deputy Director, Public Relations
jtalley@narfe.org
(703)838-7760

National Active and Retired

FEDERAL EMPLOYEES
Association



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NARFE (National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association) 606 N. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314, Phone: (703) 838-7760, Fax: (703) 838-7785.

 

This is the only website that reflects the official opinions and positions of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE). Opinions and/or positions that appear on any other site bearing NARFE's name or seal are not necessarily those of NARFE. Click here for Privacy Statement.   NARFE has been certified by Dun & Bradstreet.