A survey by the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) reveals that the the majority of federal employees are facing financial hardships due to the government shutdown.
The union represents 150,000 employees from 31 federal agencies.
Thousands of NTEU members are furloughed because of the shutdown. Many have been declared “excepted” and are still working but without pay.
The union emailed members the survey, which “sought information on the shutdown and on the effects of sequestration-forced budget cuts on their agencies,” a release said.
NTEU received more than 400 responses to the survey. The respondents answered how the shutdown has affected them and their families in terms of finances.
The release summarized a few responses from the survey:
“If it wasn’t bad enough that I was furloughed, my husband lost his job the Friday before. We are afraid that our finances may never recover.”
“I will be homeless if the government does not open soon, or I will die without my medications.”
“The previous furloughs affected me and I was just recovering from those… Perhaps federal service is not the great opportunity I once thought it was.”
“I have no choice but to look for a job in private industry to leave my federal government job so that I can support my family.”
“The trust of the American people is gone.”
“They do not see the sacrifices we make to keep our nation safe, while they play politics with our families’ well-being.”
NTEU said in the release that the shutdown could impact retention in the government, as well as its ability to recruit workers in the future.
“Whatever their job, the goal of every federal employee I know is to serve the public,” NTEU President Colleen Kelley said. “Not being able to do it through no fault of their own is sad for our country and extremely frustrating for those who chose public service as a career.”
Among those surveyed, 67 percent said they would not recommend working for the government.