Workers, Native Americans against Trump’s shutdown


This video from the USA says about itself:

Federal employees demonstrated at the Sacramento International Airport on Jan. 16, 2019. The TSA workers missed their first paychecks due to the government shutdown just the day before. Video by: Alyssa Hodenfield & Daniel Kim

By Philip Guelpa in the USA:

Growing signs of worker resistance to US government shutdown

18 January 2019

As the partial federal government shutdown, now in its fourth week, drags on, its effects on large sectors of the US population are intensifying and the resulting anger and reaction continue to grow.

On Wednesday, the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) was forced to openly acknowledge what has been widely known for some time, noting in a statement that “many employees are reporting that they are not able to report to work due to financial limitations.”

TSA workers are among the lowest-paid federal employees, living paycheck to paycheck. The impossible situation to which they are subject—forced to work without any income—is prompting growing resistance going beyond the initial form of individual ‘sickouts.’ A TSA representative reported that increasing numbers are explicitly stating that their refusal to come into work is due to financial hardship. These frank statements, by workers who are legally prohibited from striking, are a gauge of their rising level of anger.

The TSA reports that on Tuesday and Wednesday, 6.1 percent of the workforce was absent. So far, three major airports—Atlanta, Houston and Miami—have been forced to implement contingency plans due to the lack of necessary staff, causing increasing delays for passengers. The situation will only worsen and spread as the lack of pay drives growing numbers of workers to stay home.

On January 10, eight organizations—the National Congress of American Indians, Native American Contractors Association, National Indian Health Board, National Council on Urban Indian Health, National Indian Education Association, National American Indian Housing Association, National Indian Child Welfare Association, and the Self Governance Communication and Education Tribal Consortium—sent a joint letter to President Donald Trump and to the Congress calling for an immediate end to the shutdown of the federal government. Citing the trust relationship between the federal government and the tribal nations, the letter calls the shutdown an abrogation of the US’ treaties with Indian Nations: here.

With no political agreement in sight, there are growing fears within the ruling class that the lockout of 300,000 furloughed federal workers and forced unpaid labor for an additional 500,000 employees, now heading into the fifth week, could well prompt the working class to seek its own way out of the impasse: here.

FEDERAL WORKERS PROTEST SHUTDOWN Furloughed federal workers took to the Hart Senate Office Building in Washington to call for the government to reopen, chanting, “No more food banks, we need paychecks!” And, as the shutdown drags on, food assistance for millions will soon run out. [HuffPost]

FLIGHT UNIONS ISSUE SHUTDOWN WARNING Union leaders representing air traffic controllers, pilots and flight attendants released a joint statement about the incalculable risk to the safety and security of airlines and travelers caused by the government shutdown. “In our risk averse industry, we cannot even calculate the level of risk currently at play, nor predict the point at which the entire system will break. It is unprecedented,” they warned. [HuffPost]

AOC BUCKS PARTY VOTE Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) was the lone House Democrat to vote against a bill to reopen the government. “We didn’t vote with the party because one of the spending bills included ICE funding and our community felt strongly about not funding that,” she wrote. [HuffPost]

The Trump administration has prepared a draft national emergency declaration to bypass Congress and use the military to construct additional sections of the border wall with Mexico. The renewed threat to implement policy objectives and allocate funds without the consent of the legislative branch, if carried through, would mark a major and irreversible step towards presidential dictatorship: here.

President Donald Trump retreated from his demand that Congress approve a border wall before he would end the partial shutdown of the federal government, announcing Friday that he would approve a temporary, three-week restoration of funding for those federal agencies where workers have gone without pay since December 22. It was the second step back by Trump in three days, following his acknowledgement late Tuesday night that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has the “prerogative” to control the chamber of the House of Representatives, and therefore to postpone his State of the Union speech, which had been scheduled for January 29. Both the Senate and the House of Representatives are now expected to quickly pass a continuing resolution to restore funding through February 15, without funding for the border wall. During that period, negotiations will continue between the White House and congressional Democrats on the amount of funding for “border security” and whether any of it will be directed to building permanent structures along the US-Mexico border: here.

21 thoughts on “Workers, Native Americans against Trump’s shutdown

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  4. The Interior Department just called dozens of furloughed staff back to work in a rush to sell offshore drilling rights to the highest bidder.

    This is outrageous, Lola.

    The shutdown has already left national parks in chaos, slashed critical enforcement by the EPA, and left more than 800,000 workers without a paycheck. And offshore drilling of all things should not be given the priority.

    We need your help to block this drilling plan. We’re already pushing Congress to challenge these plans. But we need to ramp up the pressure — driving calls to the Interior Department and getting teams to Capitol Hill. ..

    I want you to know that we CAN win this fight and protect our coasts from dirty and dangerous offshore drilling. When Ryan Zinke first released a draft of the offshore drilling plan, there was MASSIVE blowback from the environmental movement. Now that Zinke has resigned in disgrace, we have the opportunity to make this plan so toxic that Zinke’s replacement decides it’s not worth it.

    If we fight hard enough, we can protect our coasts from Trump, but we have to move on it now. …

    Sincerely,

    Gene Karpinski
    President
    League of Conservation Voters

    Like

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  7. The Trump administration and the leadership at the Interior Department have sunk to a new low, Lola.

    The League of Conservation Voters has just learned that Interior has ordered dozens of furloughed staff back to work in a rush to sell offshore drilling rights to the highest bidder.

    The shutdown has already left national parks in chaos, slashed critical enforcement by the EPA, and left more than 800,000 workers without a paycheck. And offshore drilling of all things should not be given the priority.

    We need your help to block this drilling plan. We’re already pushing Congress to challenge these plans. But we need to ramp up the pressure — driving calls to the Interior Department and getting teams to Capitol Hill.

    We can win this, but we don’t have the resources right now. Please, Lola — the best thing you can do to help right now is renew your membership for 2019. Right now, it only costs $5.

    I want you to know that we CAN win this fight and protect our coasts from dirty and dangerous offshore drilling. When Ryan Zinke first released a draft of the offshore drilling plan, there was MASSIVE blowback from the environmental movement. Now that Zinke has resigned in disgrace, we have the opportunity to make this plan so toxic that Zinke’s replacement decides it’s not worth it.

    If we fight hard enough, we can protect our coasts from Trump, but we have to move on it now.

    Like

  8. And when Trump’s billionaire commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, was told that some federal workers are going to homeless shelters to get food, he said “I don’t really quite understand why” and suggested they just get a loan.2

    Mitch McConnell is just going along with Trump even though yesterday 52 Senators–including 6 Republicans–voted to reopen the government without a dime of wall money.

    It’s time to turn up the pressure and get out in the streets, and we’re joining allies for a big day of protest action across the country on January 29 to help demand Republicans reopen the government now.

    Will you chip in $5 to help demand that Congress end this shutdown with NO wall money?

    Domestic violence shelters are running out of money.3 Food stamps are about to be cut off. Air traffic controllers say the shutdown is causing safety risks and “routine mistakes.”4

    But Trump and his friends clearly don’t get it. First, Lara Trump said the shutdown is just “a little bit of pain” for government workers.5 Then, his billionaire Commerce Secretary said that federal workers just just “get a loan” to feed their families.

    Trump’s approval rating is in free fall.6 Voters are fed up with the shutdown and don’t support the wall.

    But Trump and McConnell STILL are refusing to reopen the government until he gets his $5.7 billion in wall funding. We cannot let that happen, because If Democrats give in and let Trump have his wall money, then he will simply shut down the government again the next time he doesn’t get his way.

    We’re already seeing cracks in the wall of Republican opposition, with Republican senators up for reelection in 2020 such as Cory Gardner voting to end the shutdown without funding the wall. Now we need to turn up the heat further by focusing on the personal stories of families being hurt by the shutdown, including U.S. Coast Guard service members going to food banks and homeless families who can’t get the loan assistance they need to get into their homes.

    If Trump wants to keep the government closed until April, we’ll make him pay the price.

    Will you chip in $5 to help demand end the shutdown with NO wall money?

    Thank you for joining in.

    –Shaunna, Kat, Karin, Holly, Kathy, Susan, Anathea, Audine, Emma, Pilar, Natalie, Melody, Lindsay, Pam, Ryan, and Sonja, the UltraViolet Action team

    CONTRIBUTE

    Sources:

    1. White House seeks list of programs that would be hurt if shutdown lasts into March, Washington Post, January 23, 2019

    2. Another Loan? Furloughed Employees Balk at Wilbur Ross’s Suggestion, New York Times, January 24, 2019

    3. Shutdown’s Pain Cuts Deep for the Homeless and Other Vulnerable Americans, New York Times, January 21, 2019

    4. Air traffic controllers union chief says shutdown causing ‘routine mistakes’, CNN, January 24, 2019

    5. Lara Trump sparks fury, ‘Marie Antoinette’ comparisons for saying federal workers need to ‘sacrifice’ during shutdown, Marin Independent Journal, January 24, 2019

    6. How unpopular is Donald Trump?, FiveThirtyEight, January 25, 2019

    Like

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