MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Federal workers who have not been paid for four weeks are receiving help to provide food for their families.
Friday, a food drive was held to give those families some much-needed help.
Federal employees impacted by the shutdown say life carries on, and bills are piling up despite a paycheck not coming in.
The feeling of desperation has set in for the thousands of government employees on the cusp of missing their second paycheck because of the government shutdown.
“It’s just too many federal workers dealing with this having to go to work and not get paid or having to sit at home not that you want to sit at home, being forced to sit at home and you’re not receiving a paycheck,” said Mia Williams, Executive VP of American Federation of Government Employees Local 55. “That’s not a vacation.”
Dozens of TSA employees lined up inside Douglas Park on Friday morning to receive help from the Mid-South Food Bank, who partnered with the local chapter of the American Federation of Government Employees.
Some of the most basic things were provided, including produce, meat, and dairy. Together, those items make complete meals to feed federal employees and their families who are left waiting for the government shutdown to end.
“We need it to end yesterday,” Williams said. “That’s just how soon. Not today. Not tomorrow. Yesterday.”
Volunteers like Tammy McFarland from Cornerstone Baptist Church filled cars with those essential items for federal employees.
“We all work for a reason, to provide for our families,” McFarland said. “So, if they are not able to work things still go on. You still got to pay your rent, your light bill and you still need food.”
Food drives like this one are happening across the country as federal employees struggling to cope with life without a paycheck now turn to food banks and food pantries to keep food on the table.
Many local businesses are also doing their part to help federal employees in need. Click here to learn more.