US government shutdown: Employees told to barter for rent while they wait to be paid

Conrad Duncan@theconradduncan
Friday 28 December 2018 09:00
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Picture(Rex Features/Twitter)

The US government shutdown shows no sign of ending, as Democrats and Republicans continue to disagree over funding for Trump’s border wall.

But while they argue, many government employees are being “furloughed”, meaning they’re not being paid.

And when we say “many”, we’re talking more than 420,000 employees, according to NBC.

On Wednesday, the Office of Personal Management (OPM) sent out sample letters for employees who are struggling with paying rent and bills.

Their advice? Barter with their landlord for lower rent.

The letters basically tell employees to ask for mercy from creditors and mortgage companies.

In its suggested letter to landlords, the OPM advises employees to write this:

I will keep in touch with you to keep you informed about my income status and I would like to discuss with you the possibility of trading my services to perform maintenance (e.g. painting, carpentry work) in exchange for partial rent payments.

Many social media users were quick to point out the letters were tone-deaf to most government employees’ financial problems, especially as most do not have a “personal attorney”.

Others pointed out that the idea employees would have to barter for rent is pretty dystopian.

One journalist said the same letters were sent out during the Obama administration shutdown so this isn’t necessarily a problem with just Trump.

But regardless of whether the US government has always treated its employees badly, this is still bad.

Like, really bad.

The government shutdown is not expected to end until 2019.

HT: The Daily Dot

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