WASHINGTON, DC – Yesterday, Senator Brown met with workers who are being hurt by the ongoing government shutdown. In Cleveland, Brown met with Transportation Security Administration (TSA) workers at Cleveland Hopkins Airport, who are currently working without pay due to the government shutdown. Brown also spoke with UNITE HERE Local 23 food service workers in Arlington, Virginia, who work in the Smithsonian museums and at federal agencies in our nation’s capital and are currently furloughed as a result of the shutdown. Many of these contracted workers are paid hourly and often have no way of recouping lost hours and wages during a government shutdown.
“I don’t think the President understands how many people get hurt by this shutdown,” said Brown. “President Trump is taking paychecks away from thousands of American workers and throwing families into crisis every day he refuses to reopen the government. The President must end his shutdown and put Americans back to work.”
Brown continues to call on President Trump and Senator McConnell to end this shut down immediately, and believes the Senate shouldn’t be voting on anything else this week until the government is reopened. Brown is set to introduce legislation to secure back pay for government contract employees who have gone without pay during the government shutdown. Brown is also joining Senate colleagues in a letter this week calling on the Administration to direct federal agencies to ensure government contractors receive the back pay they deserve.
Media outlets in Ohio and across the country covered Brown’s visit with workers in both Ohio and the DC area, and shared workers’ stories of their financial struggles under this unnecessary and avoidable shutdown:
- MSNBC – “Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown and other Democrats are pushing for contract workers to receive back pay.”
- Spectrum News – “Brown is asking President Trump to end the shutdown and says he’s never seen a president throw, what he’s calling, a temper tantrum like this.”
- WSYX – “Today Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio spoke with agents at Hopkins international in Cleveland. He said he wants to learn more about how they’re being affected.”
- WOIO – “On his way to Washington this morning, Senator Sherrod Brown stopped to speak with TSA agents at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.”
- WBNS – “Ohio Senator Sherrod brown visited furloughed food service workers and contractors at their emergency meeting.”
- WEWS – “Senator Brown said he doesn’t think the President and members of Congress realize how hard the shutdown is for them [workers].”
- WCMH – “Senator Sherrod Brown met with TSA employees in Cleveland before heading to Washington. And once he got here, he met with food service workers who work in federal buildings here in Washington, many of them live paycheck to paycheck and they say they don’t even know how they’re even going to pay their rent.”
- Cleveland Plain Dealer – “Sherrod Brown, Tim Ryan say Donald Trump is needlessly hurting federal workers with shutdown.”
- Toledo Blade – “As shutdown enters 19th day, government workers feel the pinch.”
Before the holidays, the Senate unanimously passed a clean funding measure, which Brown supported. The White House indicated it would support that short-term spending measure to fund the government before President Trump abruptly changed course and shut down the government – after saying he was proud to shut down the government for border security. Last week, the House passed a similar measure to fund the government and reopen the government with bipartisan support. The government could reopen immediately if Republican Senate Leader McConnell would allow the Senate to vote and the President would sign the bill.