Workers Are Feeling the Pain of the Trump Shutdown

From unpaid workers trying to make ends meet, to essential services that have been suspended, the sting of Trump’s Shutdown is being felt across the West. As the longest shutdown in history enters its 25th day, workers and local economies are suffering. See below:


ALASKA: ‘It’s ridiculous’: Furloughed Juneau residents frustrated at federal shutdown

“For many people such as McCabe, a few weeks without pay is extremely inconvenient. For Mary Goode, the shutdown’s effect extends from coast to coast. […] Her son, who lives in South Carolina, was in construction until badly injured his hand on the job and wasn’t able to return. He decided to get his degree, but is struggling to make ends meet. Goode said she’s sending him money for rent, food and gas. Without her paycheck, she won’t have anything to send him. He’s told her that he’ll figure something out, but that hasn’t stopped her from worrying.”


ARIZONA: Behind the Garbage, Shutdown Takes Invisible Toll on Arizona’s Environment

“Even before the shutdown, the maintenance backlog for the Grand Canyon’s roads and buildings stood at $330 million. Overall, infrastructure at Arizona’s national parks need $531 million worth of work. ‘In order to preserve the economic value of the visitor economy, they’re trying to keep the parks open with bare minimum staffing,’ said Elgie Holstein, the senior director for strategic planning for the nonprofit Environmental Defense Fund. ‘But they’re not doing any of the work that gets done day-to-day to maintain the parks and keep them clean and safe and sanitary.’”


CALIFORNIA: California’s economy could suffer if the government shutdown drags into February

“Cooper, the furloughed EPA employee, said she applied for unemployment insurance but it still won’t be sufficient to make ends meet. ‘Even if I don’t pay any of my other bills and don’t do anything else but try to pay for the rent, my unemployment for the month of January still won’t cover my rent,’ Cooper said. She even postponed doctor’s appointments and canceled a trip and cut back on eating out to help save enough money to pay the electricity bill.”


COLORADO: Federal shutdown accounts for 20 percent of unemployment claims in Colorado

“Federal employees in Colorado are filing for unemployment benefits by the hundreds — accounting for about 20 percent of unemployment claims filed statewide since the partial U.S. government shutdown began. As of Monday morning, the state had received 1,834 unemployment claims related to the shutdown, according to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.”


HAWAII: Government shutdown delays Southwest’s plans to start Hawaii service

“Southwest Airlines’ plans to service Hawaii are now on hold thanks to the ongoing government shutdown. Southwest had been working with the Federal Aviation Administration to obtain what’s called ETOPS — or extended-range twin-engine operational performance standards — certification for extended over-water flights. But the problem: The FAA workers who oversee those activities are on furlough due to the government shutdown.”


IDAHO: Shutdown threatens Idaho’s hatchery-based steelhead season

“An Idaho nonprofit says the federal government shutdown is threatening the state’s ability to keep hatchery-based steelhead season open, and thus affecting local families and businesses that depend on the fish for their livelihoods. […] Idaho’s permit for hatchery-based catching is required to be secured no later than March 15, and as of now Idaho’s permit, according to the letter, is ‘sitting on a desk of an empty office.’”


MONTANA: Federal shutdown ripples into January workload

“‘These people are very mission-driven. They want to get back to work. There’s so much work to do and they’re not being allowed to do it.’ Weber said about half a dozen of his colleagues are excepted from the federal furlough, meaning their jobs must go on although they aren’t getting paid. The rest of the national forest’s roughly 160 full-time-equivalent staff are ordered to stay home, not check email, or do any of their regular duties. So that means someone has sent emails to hundreds of wildland firefighters asking if they are available for work this summer, but no one is on hand to start training and certification classes.”


NEVADA: Prolonged shutdown could threaten food stamps for nearly half a million Nevadans

“The next federal program to feel the shutdown squeeze may be the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as SNAP, which provides assistance to roughly 14 percent of the state’s population. Although funding for the program has been extended into February, any cessation of funding for the safety-net program could have an oversized effect on Nevada, which had the highest percentage growth in food stamp enrollment nationally between 2013 and 2016 and a 259 percent increase in cases between 2007 to March 2018.”


NEW MEXICO: As federal shutdown continues, funding deadlines for domestic violence efforts near

“Organizations that provide shelter, advocacy and support for survivors of intimate partner violence, stalking and sexual assault will start losing money later this week because of both the government shutdown and because Congress let the Violence Against Women Act lapse over a month ago. […] New Mexico operations will continue normally until Jan. 18, said MaryEllen Garcia, the grants bureau chief at the CVRC. After that date, if the shutdown continues, federal offices will no longer be open to disperse federal funds.”


OREGON: Oregon unemployment claims spiked as shutdown began

“Unemployment claims by federal workers in Oregon increased fourfold after the government shutdown began last month, according to data from the Oregon Employment Department. Between Dec. 21 — the last day before the shutdown started — and Jan. 10, some 1,900 Oregon workers filed unemployment claims. That compares with 450 in the same period a year earlier.”


UTAH: Utah officials starting plan for prolonged federal government shutdown

“Utah remains in ‘decent’ shape as the partial government shutdown enters its fourth week but won’t be able to keep federal programs going long term, a state budget official said Monday. ‘We are not in position to keep all programs open indefinitely. We can keep some programs open, some services going. We would have to prioritize and determine how long. We are not in a position to just backfill all of the federal programs in the state,’ Kristen Cox, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget, told reporters.”


WASHINGTON: Seattle-area federal workers miss first paycheck after shutdown

“Roger Smith is a 17-year veteran of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) — and he’s now working without a paycheck. ‘The mortgage, the utilities, just trying to keep up on the bills, that’s the concern,’ Smith said. That’s why Smith went to a Resource Fair put together by the Port of Seattle, with banks and utilities offering help to employees who aren’t getting paid.”


WYOMING: Shutdown threatens food programs; millions in lost wages

“The state’s economy has just begun to feel the effects of the shutdown. The bulk of the 3,674 non-military federal employees in Wyoming did not receive paychecks Friday. Those lost wages cost the economy roughly $8.3 million, an analysis of data from the Wyoming Division of Research & Planning indicates.”