Features, Finance, Labor News Briefs, Law and Politics, Municipal Government, National

Unpaid Federal Contractors Besiege McConnell’s Office

January 22, 2019

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

WASHINGTON—About 25 workers for federal contractors put out of work by the government shutdown besieged Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office Jan. 16, brandishing stacks of their unpaid bills. “Mr. McConnell, I can’t pay my bills until you shut this furlough down,” said Yvette Hicks, a single mother and security guard at the now-closed National Air and Space Museum, who has two children with severe asthma. “McConnell is the one who could open the government tomorrow,” said an official of Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ, which organized the protest. Unlike direct federal employees, who will receive back pay whenever the shutdown ends, cafeteria, cleaning, and building-security workers, who are employed by contractors, will get nothing. Nonvoting House Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) has introduced a bill that would pay contractors money to give back pay to workers affected by the shutdown. Three Democratic Senators, Tina Smith of Minnesota and Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin of Maryland, introduced a companion bill, the Fair Wage Compensation for Low-Wage Contractor Employees Act, on Jan. 16. “You all are part of the civil service’s services we provide to the people of this country,” Cardin told a rally in the Capitol. Read more

January 22, 2019

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.