Furloughed workers worry as shutdown continues

Author: , Reporter, news@wfmz.com
Published: Oct 02 2013 10:02:18 PM EDT   Updated On: Oct 02 2013 02:43:20 PM EDT

The federal government's forced shutdown sent about 800,000 federal workers home without pay, closed national parks and crippled some programs, while leaving essential services up and running.

Furloughed workers were sent home until further notice, meaning thousands of federal employees are now temporarily out of work including folks in the Lehigh Valley.

For the last 24 years, Lisa-Jon Trinidad has worked for a division of the USDA. The impromptu vacation she's on right now makes her nervous.

"I have cell phone bills you know, I have doctors bills of my own, I have doctor bills of my husband, I have the car payment," she explained. "I'd be lying if I said I wasn't worried about bills or when I'm going back to work."

But she doesn't know when she'll go back to work or get a paycheck.

"I don't like not getting paid, it's not fun," added Trinidad.

The furlough went into effect October 1st. Trinidad says she had four hours to go to her office and go through what's called 'shutdown procedures'.

"Made sure that my voice mail stated that we were on a federal government shutdown, made sure signs were posted to inform our clientele," she said. "And then we turned the lights out and we left."

Federal workers feeling the squeeze of this shutdown aren't sure if they'll be paid for this period. Trinidad just wants Congress to get it done, so everyone can get back to work.

"Just hope that everything is just going to work its way out and these guys are going to get their stuff together."

This isn't the first time Trinidad has been through a forced government shutdown. She worked for the same company back in the 90's when a forced furlough lasted three weeks.