BURBANK (CBSLA) — We are a week into the longest government shutdown in five years.
Whether it’s workers not getting paid or citizens not being able to get essential services, impacts are now being felt here in the Southland.
“It is difficult. This Christmas I tried to limit my spending compared to previous years. I have to watch all the driving I do around LA on my days off,” said Rosa Guzman, who has been working as a Transportation Security Administration officer for four years. She is also the executive secretary of the union that represents TSA workers in Los Angeles.
“We watch TV every day and we just keep getting reminded about the shutdown and we don’t know how long it’s going to last,” said Guzman.
Guzman says, like many other TSA officers, she is working to support her family which includes two small children. And she goes to work knowing she will likely not get a check on payday.
“We never close so I have to go to work every single day regardless of what’s going on,” said Guzman.
The federal Office of Personnel Management sent out sample letters workers can use to get through the financial struggle while they’re not getting paid.
One sample letter they could send to their landlord suggests writing “I would like to discuss with you the possibility of trading my services to perform maintenance — for example painting, carpentry work, in exchange for partial rent payments.”
Guzman’s reaction: “I don’t think my landlord’s going to accept anything else besides rent money and some people being a TSA officer that’s the only job they know. They’ve been in it from the beginning since day one.”