Waterways around the United States are protected by the Coast Guard. Now, members of the military group are working without being paid. They received a notice informing them that they would not be receiving a paycheck, the first time that a military group has worked without pay and only because the government shutdown continues to go on with no end in sight. Families are wondering when they will be able to receive a paycheck once again and what they will do about house payments, utility bills, and food to put on the table so that they can eat. Some families are going to food banks and trying to take out loans so that they can survive.
The Coast Guard is funded under the Department of Homeland Security. Since there is no funding for this department, the Coast Guard isn’t being paid. The Department of Defense funds the other branches, which means that they will still receive their paychecks as normal unless there is something that happens with the shutdown that would impact this department as well. Members of the Coast Guard, as well as retirees from the branch, last received a check on December 31. No one knew that the shutdown would last as long as it has, which has meant that the Coast Guard workers have now been without pay for two weeks.
There has been a recent donation by the USAA Bank to help families who have been impacted by the shutdown. Another organization that is trying to step in to help is the American Red Cross. Coast Guard members will work without being paid, but there is no indication as to how long they will continue to be able to support their families. Some have considered finding a second job, which would mean that they would have to scale back on the hours they work for the Coast Guard.