The consequences of the shutdown: “They play with people’s lives’

02b455796bf1b12679aa4e8414afdd69 - The consequences of the shutdown: "They play with people's lives’

A federal official get free food in Washington.

The longest shutdown in American history has harrowing consequences for a portion of the American population. ‘It is outrageous.’

‘At the school of my children to give them since last week, extra food for people who normally are seen on federal food aid to count, ” says Anna Perales, who for a decade lived in New York …

‘At the school of my children to give them since last week, extra food for people who normally are seen on federal food aid to count, ” says Anna Perales, who for the past ten years in New York lives and works. “Their voedselcheques come no more, because the officials do not work anymore.’

The consequences of the shutdown, four weeks, let feel. Not only for the 800,000 civil servants who are not paid more, but also for people who rely on federal assistance. ‘People are evil’, says Perales. ‘Trump is playing with people’s lives. I don’t understand is that they have so long let it continue.’

There are other – sometimes less obvious – consequences. Perales tells the story of a young woman with diabetes that her insulin can’t pay because the health insurance is lost. “Or suddenly see a coffee shop, for example, the officials and clientele disappear. That now buy less than before. The costs are enormous.’

Food banks

Belgian Jan Van den douwe van der ploeg, professor in communication in general at the University of Michigan, feels the shutdown in three ways. “America is so great that you fairly quickly, the plane should take. But the security at the airports are currently not paid and are therefore flocking to report sick. Waiting times are getting longer and, here and there, closing airports and even.’

Of the douwe van der ploeg: ‘in Addition, there are important deadlines for applying for research budgets for studies at the university. When and how applications now will be treated, is very uncertain. Some of my projects will be affected. In a country where the national and international ranking of universities is so important, can have far-reaching consequences.’

‘And then there is the daily life. Our children go to public schools, where the background of their friends are also very diverse, ” he says. “They come home with stories about friends where a parent is the only income and thus, the entire family needs to support it. Since the parent now has no income, the whole family on food banks designated. The class lives there, intense in it.”

The professor also tells about the ‘smaller’ stories here and there popping up. “As of civil servants, which is now the Uber driver as much as possible have to earn money to a huge student loan to pay back. Or people of much-needed documents waiting, such as passports, and perhaps until after the shutdown will have to wait for them to actually have.’


In American media appear testimonies of federal officials about their situation. ‘We should our credit cards be used? We are going to borrow? On what we save? We have cash to hoard. I estimate that we still have two months our bills can be paid, ” says the wife of a lawyer for the government works at The Washington Post.

Tens of thousands of them have to go to work without that they know whether they will be paid, including FBI agents and prosecutors. When the shutdown is over, they will be paid. But until then – and given the standoff between Trump and Democrats can still take a long time – they are without income security. “It is as if you are by your own troops in the back is shot,” says Castillo, a judge in Chicago, to The New York Times. He fears that young people not for the federal government will want to work.

‘Here we are, the men and women of our country protect, they do what they need to do, they are risking every day their life, but they are not paid, ” says Nathan Catura, the chairman of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, to The Washington Post.

Rich country

According to Perales earn the federal officials, not so much. She is surprised that in a rich country like the U.S. so many people almost on the street if they have their pay, not get paid. ‘They have not saved enough money for a couple of weeks to be able to bridge. People can access their invoices are not paid. It is outrageous.’

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