The Government Shutdown Will Hit Black Federal Workers Hardest
The government shutdown will most immediately affect the livelihoods of thousands of federal workers, but it will be black federal workers who will be hit the hardest.
“The shutdown will impact in different ways some of the nation’s more than 2 million civilian workers, about a fifth of whom experts estimate to be people of color,” reports TheGrio.
African Americans represent approximately half of the minorities who would be out of work, according to various data.
President Barack Obama says he knows how dire this situation is. In a speech yesterday, he warned that as “America’s largest employer,” a federal government that’s ceased operations could cause widespread distress.
“Office buildings would close. Paychecks would be delayed. Vital services that seniors and veterans, women and children, businesses and our economy depend on would be hamstrung,” the President said. “Business owners would see delays… in permits, ” he added. “Veterans who’ve sacrificed for their country will find their support centers unstaffed. Tourists will find every one of America’s national parks and monuments, from Yosemite to the Smithsonian to the Statue of Liberty, immediately closed.”
Hundreds of thousands of public servants who remain on the job will do so without pay, Obama said. And several hundred thousand more are indefinitely furloughed without pay.
Federal employees aren’t the only ones upset.
In Washington, D.C. , the Mayor Vincent C. Gray called everyone back to work. He declared all District government operations as “essential” during the federal shutdown and sent a letter to the head of the federal Office of Management and Budget explaining his decision. But some lawyers called this action illegal.
“I have determined that everything the District government does – protecting the health, safety and welfare of our residents and visitors – is essential,” said Gray in a radio address.
“It is ridiculous that a city of 632,000 people – a city where we have balanced our budget for 18 consecutive years and have a rainy-day fund of well over a billion dollars – cannot spend its residents’ own local tax dollars to provide them the services they’ve paid for without Congressional approval,” the Mayor said.
Some government services will continue. Seniors on Social Security receive their checks, mail delivery will continue and government operations related to national security or public safety will go on.
We have some tips that will hopefully be of some service to the workers who have been furloughed. Check them out here.