The men and women who make sure our planes don't crash are getting stiffed.
Federal workers in jobs with vital safety and security implications for millions of Americans just received paystubs that show their net pay as $0.00, thanks to Trump and his shutdown of the federal government.
Air traffic controllers are responsible for making sure that airplanes take off, travel, and land safely at airports all over the country but they weren’t paid anything because of the shutdown.
Corey Soignet, one of the controllers responsible for the airspace above George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, told the Washington Post, “This is the first time I’ve received a pay stub with zero on it for work completed.”
“Now I don’t know how much I can put toward that credit card. Do I pay half my water bill? Do I have enough money for 30 days or 60 days or six months? You can’t ask people to budget like that.”
There are 24,000 workers at the Federal Aviation Administration like Soignet, whose work is considered vital for “life and safety.” That means that despite the shutdown, they are needed to come in to work. They just won’t get paid for it.
Andrew LeBovidge, a regional vice president with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association told the Post that the Trump shutdown is putting a “tremendous amount of stress” on the vital air traffic control system, which “doesn’t need any more stress.”
The danger runs in sharp contrast to Trump’s dismissal of the issue. When he was asked about federal workers being unpaid, he said their sacrifice served a “higher purpose”: building his wall.
Trump has shut down the government because Democrats will not waste billions of tax dollars to erect a useless border wall to appease racists.
As a result, over 800,000 federal workers have lost their paychecks and still Trump — backed up by Republicans in Congress — refuses to give up on his obsession.
TSA agents are calling in sick because of the shutdown, and that is creating longer security lines and forcing airline terminals to close. A group of 61,000 pilots sent Trump a letter warning that the shutdown is endangering passenger safety.
A group representing FBI agents recently sent a letter to Congress warning that the shutdown could “compromise national security.”
Food safety concerns are rising because inspectors aren’t in place to verify the quality of food being produced for public consumption.
Meanwhile, federal workers were told to get jobs as dog walkers or babysitters to make up for their lost income.
The Trump shutdown is making American life more dangerous and dirty. Trump and Republicans do not care, as long as they can continue appealing to racism and fear.
Published with permission of The American Independent.