WASHINGTON – This morning Democratic leadership met with President Trump to discuss the final spending bill of the year and hopefully avoid a partial government shutdown at midnight on December 22. The shutdown would be the third in 2018, disrupting work and pay for hundreds of thousands of federal workers in the middle of the holiday season.
In response to today’s meeting, and the uncertainty surrounding the potential partial shutdown in 11 days, American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox Sr. issued the following statement:
“Every time we face a government shutdown, the paychecks our members and their families rely on suddenly become a political football. The most basic job of Congress is to fund federal agencies. Passing short, successive continuing resolutions (CRs) is an abdication of that responsibility.
“As the union that represents 700,000 federal and D.C. government workers, we call on Congress and the administration to fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year.
“Our members take home an average of around $500 each week. Any interruption in their pay will have a devastating impact on them, their families, and their communities.
“TSA officers, Border Patrol agents, correctional officers, and other federal law enforcement officers will continue to put their lives on the line whether they receive their paychecks or not, and this prospect alone should motivate Congress and the administration to do their work.
“Our members are asking how they are supposed to pay for rent, food, and gas if they are required to work without a paycheck. The holiday season makes these inquiries especially heart-wrenching.
“Congress and the President should not hold agency funding hostage to controversial policies unrelated to the budget. We call upon them to pass a full-year funding bill that includes the modest pay adjustment for federal employees already agreed to by the Senate.”