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Cash-strapped federal workers selling items online for money

In the United States, the cash payment package to pay for the package is disturbingly common, regardless of profession or position.


A recent Federal Reserve report revealed how small the majority of Americans have in their budgets: Four adults out of 10 say they can not produce $ US400 in an emergency without borrowing or selling anything, according to the figures recorded by families in 2017, a relatively prosperous year for the American economy.

But the closure, which began just before Christmas, took many federal workers by surprise and lasts longer than expected. This has left employees in isolation locked up at home, sifting garages and lockers, basements and shelves to find goods and personal treasures for sale.

"You have to give some sort of chilly look to the things around you and decide what would be marketable to someone else," said Jay Elhard, licensed from his job as a media specialist at Acadia National Park in Maine.

Elhard, who has worked for the National Park Service since 2005, has started a Facebook group for people buying items from licensed federal workers. But so far it was only him trying to sell things: copies of his graduation thesis at Columbia University on wolves in Yellowstone, a carbon fiber backpack he had undertaken for excursions, a painting by Polychrome Overlook in Denali National Park.

  President Donald Trump.

President of the United States Donald Trump. Credit: Bloomberg

The painting was a window for his years that ran the streets there as a park ranger. Now he hopes he will sell so he can spend the money on the next mortgage payment.

The guidelines of government offices have so far provided little comfort, some workers said. Nobody in Washington seems to know how long the partial closure of the government will continue, but there has been little reason to believe that the end is near.

In the meantime, the Office of Management and Budget has provided little advice as well as encouraging workers to reach mortgage lenders and mortgage companies before debt.

The Coast Guard posted a tip this week suggesting that employees take garage sales or sell things online, bring dogs or babysitters or "become a mystery shopper" to get by. [19659014] Members of the Union and Internal Revenue Service gather outside an IRS service center to demand an end to the government's partial shutdown. "src =" https://static.ffx.io/images/$zoom_0.231%2C$multiply_1%2C$ratio_1.776846%2C$width_1059%2C$x_0%2C$y_107/t_crop_custom/w_768/t_sharpen%2Cq_auto % 2Cf_auto% 2Cdpr_auto / cc6f5980cebeaa339426f74e4c670ff48dbda94b "srcset =" https://static.ffx.io/images/$zoom_0.231%2C$multiply_1%2C$ratio_1.776846%2C$width_1059%2C$x_0%2C$y_107/t_crop_custom / w_768 / t_sharpen% 2Cq_auto% 2Cf_auto% 2Cdpr_auto / cc6f5980cebeaa339426f74e4c670ff48dbda94b, https://static.ffx.io/images/$zoom_0.231%2C$multiply_1%2C$ratio_1.776846%2C$width_1059%2C$x_0%2C$ y_107 / t_crop_custom / w_768 / t_sharpen% 2Cq_auto% 2Cf_auto% 2Cdpr_2.0 / cc6f5980cebeaa339426f74e4c670ff48dbda94b 2x "/>

Members of the Union and Internal Revenue Service gather outside an IRS service center to request the end of the partial government shutdown Credit: AP

"Bankruptcy is the last option", read the suggestion sheet.

"Although it may be inconvenient to deal with the facts, it is better avoit are the 'hide the head in the sand', the reaction of the document. "Stay in command of the situation by understanding what is happening."

The Coast Guard removed the tip sheet from his website Wednesday morning The Washington Post informed him.

Suggestions do not "reflect the current Coast Guard efforts to support our workforce during this range of appropriations," said McBride. "As such, this guide has been removed," said Lieutenant Commander Scott McBride, a service spokesman.

  Federal employees gather at the Capitol to protest against the impasse between Congress and President Donald Trump on his request to finance a US-Mexico

Federal employees gather at the Capitol to protest against the impasse between Congress and President Donald Trump on his request to finance a US-Mexico border wall. Credit: AP

President Donald Trump, when asked about the difficulties faced by workers, federal employees "are on my side".

"Take a look at social media, so many of those who say it's very difficult for me, it's very difficult for my family but Mr. President, you're doing the right thing." They are patriots " he said.

Anna Cory, a librarian from Morrisville, NC, who works as a contractor for the Environmental Protection Agency, is managing an "online yard sale for the government" on Facebook, where she is selling rare books of 1800. He held in his hands the worn leather volumes to photograph them, enlarging the most beautiful pages to show scores and decorated portraits.

"As a librarian, it's what I appreciate, it's what I appreciate, stuff to do." Cory said. "I had a couple of friends who told me:" I wish I could buy your stuff and give it back to you ", which would be fantastic but not always feasible."

Two weeks after the arrest, Cory, 39, became engaged. Right now, she would like to be about to choose a wedding date and look for a home where she and her girlfriend can start their new life together. All of this is pending now.

In addition to selling articles on Facebook, she is looking for temporary work or other full-time positions, even if it makes her think about leaving EPA. This is the second closure that Cory has endured in his two years, but the last time the EPA budget has allowed it to remain open. When the current one started, he got to know his colleagues who were around the end of 2013 and were confident that the whole thing would be short-lived.

"We were all unprepared to continue that long" Cory said.

If closure closes next week, it will become the longest and closest neighbor of government in US history, surpassing the 21-day shutdown under President Bill Clinton, which extended from December 1995 to January 1996. [19659006] Hungry for signs of resolution, many workers in isolation have been glued to their televisions and their news feeds, but there is little to feel optimistic about.

Determined to put together more than $ 5 billion for a wall in the United States southern border, President Trump said he is ready for arrest for "months or years".

At a high-level meeting on Wednesday's closure, Trump asked Democratic leaders if they would support his wall if he reopened the government. They said "no". Trump came out, later calling the meeting "a total waste of time". Democratic leaders reprimanded him for "launching another rage attack".

For some workers, endless struggles and political turbulence eroded any sense of stability that they felt they were working for the federal government. Joseph Simeone, security inspector of the Federal Aviation Administration in Virginia, said he was partially attracted by his position due to job security. Now he feels that uncertainty is a "constant threat".

"I do not have much confidence that this will be solved, even if they finance the wall or if the president ends up allowing funding that has been presented," Simeone said. "We'll probably have to start over again later, it's making me feel like I have a better shot to get back to the industry."

A few years after retirement, Simeone, 53, is suddenly applying for unemployment and for part-time work that brings together outdoor furniture. In the meantime, he sells things on Craigslist in a "Shutdown Special": two guitars, an amplifier, a massage table and his 14-year-old television. He has not sold much yet, but that's all he has to offer.

In e-mails and text messages, Simeon checks in with his colleagues who feel adrift in closing.

Some jokingly offered to build the wall by themselves if it brought things to an end. Others have tried to enjoy the time to slow down, read or train. At night, Simeon said he was struggling to sleep, consumed by worry about what will happen.

"I have $ US24 in cash on me, I do not use credit cards and I have $ US.40 in my bank account," said Simeon. "If we lose this impending paycheck, I will be completely broke."

The Washington Post

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