While the Republicans and Democrats argue over POTUS Trump’s wall, many federal workers are finding it hard to make ends meet without a paycheck thanks to the partial government shutdown now in its third week.
Unpaid federal workers that consist of 380,000 furloughed employees and 420,000 people working without pay, ow somewhere in the neighborhood of $438 million dollars in mortgage and rent payments for the month of January, according to a report published by Zillow.
Zillow senior economist Aaron Tarrazas stated:
“Like Americans in the private sector, many federal employees rely on each and every paycheck to cover critical expenses, including housing.”
In America today it should come at no surprise that just one missed mortgage payment can start the whole eviction and foreclosure process not to mention the late fees that a person will rack-up while waiting for a paycheck.
Some government workers are turning to social media and crowdsourcing sites such as GoFundMe to raise money to keep the rent paid and their families off the street. Last month, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the agency that oversees civilian workers in the federal government, made suggestions on Twitter for affected workers to negotiate with landlords, creditors and mortgage companies. Some of the suggestions, such as offering to do maintenance work like painting and carpentry for one’s landlord in lieu of paying rent, were met with criticism.
There are an estimated 350,000 workers on furlough without pay due to Trump’s $5 billion proposal for the U.S-Mexico border wall. There are many more whose jobs are considered “essential” that are working without pay of any kind. To add insult to injury, POTUS Trump has ordered a freeze on federal employee salary rates in 2019.
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