Friday, January 18, 2019

We Need to Support People Impacted by the Government Shutdown, Here are Some Ways To Do That

Help is Needed
It is saddening to think that within our country there are people who work for our Government--the entity that runs America--and they aren't getting paid. Those who provide the service of keeping the USA functioning and safe are either furloughed, working without pay, or simply have had to quit/resign from their jobs to earn an income. Thankfully there are folk stepping-up to help, such as Paypal with interest-free cash advances now available to the 800,000-ish people currently without a paycheck from what should've been a dependable career. How can we, as individuals help these people suffering from the shutdown, however? I did some research and saw various tips I thought I would share. In no particular order...

Donate, Donate, Donate
Whether you are giving goods to a local food pantry, helping with funds to repair National Parks that have turned into a mess, or giving money to nonprofits that are assisting furloughed and unpaid Government employees, donating whatever you can is helpful.

Contact Your Senator or Representative
Make whoever is representing you in Congress aware that you, as their constituent, do not approve of this shutdown. Be respectful, yet firm, and keep in mind you may not speak with your actual Representative or Senator,  but someone who works for them and notes down calls and such. You can find your Senator here and your Representative here.

Understand and Empathize if Impacted Employees are Your Customers/Renters
It is beyond depressing to hear about Government employees being served with eviction notices due to being unable to pay rent, going without needed care, or suffering in homes lacking electricity or heating due to being unable to afford bills. If you provide any kind of services for people who are currently furloughed or working without pay, try to be as understanding as possible. Whether it means offering a discount, allowing these workers to pay you later once this shutdown is (hopefully in the near future) resolved, or anything else,making an effort to ease the burden of this shutdown in whatever way possible is undoubtedly a kind gesture that will greatly appreciated.

Just Be a Friend
You don't have to donate a bunch of stuff, be making all kinds of phone calls, or own a business helping Government employees to offer support to those hurting from all this. Just by being present and being a friend to furloughed employees or those working without pay you're helping. These people are our friends and family after all, and they are feeling a wide-range of emotions from fear, to anger, to general worry. An empathetic ear or shoulder to lean on (or cry on, if needed) can do a world of wonder.

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