The latest federal government shutdown is the second longest in American history (we’re currently on day 21). However, just because the government is on a break doesn’t mean that the lives of government workers halt as well. Hundreds of thousands of federal government employees have been affected by this shutdown.
Thousands of activists, federal workers, and their loved ones have shared their stories under the hashtag #ShutdownStories. Tales of Americans unable to afford their mortgages, gas, or groceries are pushing many people to try and help our civil servants. Local businesses and organizations are offering deals and support for federal employees who are going through financial strife.
The Tin Roof is offering all federal employees with government identification 25 percent off all their food if they come in any day between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. In the spirit of the Tin Roof, they inserted a little humor into their announcement by stating, “We hope you are all back to work soon, until then drop in and see us. I mean, it’s not like you have work in the morning, right? Thank you for your service.”
Humans aren’t the only ones whose food supply has been altered by the shutdown. Many employees can barely afford to feed their families, let alone their beloved pets. The Charleston Animal Society is helping ensure all pets have food in their bellies by extending their pet food bank shelves to federal employees. You can head over to the Charleston Animal Society Animal Care Campus in North Charleston weekdays 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. and weekends from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
With the government shutdown, many people think that national parks have been closed indefinitely. However, most parks remain open with only skeleton staffs to keep them functioning. In Charleston county, Fort Sumter National Monument and Charles Pinckney National Historic Site will continue to be accessible to the public during the shutdown. However, any guest who enters the park should be cautious. Park trails and outdoor signage will be available for guests to assist them in staying on track, but the National Parks Service will not have any visitor services available including restrooms, public information, trash collection, facilities or road maintenance. Emergency and rescue services are extremely restricted and the NPS websites are not updated to reflect current park conditions, so make sure you don’t stray too far from the trails.