WASHINGTON, March 7, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Forty-three days. It's been 43 days since President Donald Trump signed his job-killing Executive Order freezing hiring in the federal government, and in that time it's been nothing short of a disaster.
="https://medium.com/@JDavidCoxSr/trumps-job-killing-hiring-freeze-is-leaving-military-families-out-in-the-cold-e29fb390c3c9#.h0du1tw2f" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Original Op-Ed by AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. appears on Medium.com
I've heard personally from veterans who can't get work. From Social Security processors who are trying to do more with less. And now, the latest fallout from President Trump's attack on federal working people and their families has forced members of our military on bases around the country to choose between their duty, and caring for their children.
The brave men and women who serve in our armed forces have sacrificed so much, and now we're asking them to give up even more as President Trump prevents military bases from having enough public servants to operate efficiently. Why does our President continue to make life hard on those who have chosen to serve their country?
Did you know that 85 percent of federal workers live outside the Washington, D.C. area? And did you know that the federal government hires more veterans than any other employer in the country? And that a hiring freeze does nothing to curb costs or improve services, but instead means longer lines at Social Security offices, fewer workplace safety inspections, less oversight of environmental polluters, and greater risk to our nation's food supply and clean water systems?
The President would have you believe these cuts are necessary and do a lot to shrink the size of what his Press Secretary called "dramatic expansion in the federal workforce," but the facts don't line up with the narrative we're being sold. Fact is, the number of federal employees has been frozen at about 2 million for the past 50 years, and around 200,000 leave the ranks every year. There is no way we can continue to process Medicare claims, inspect our food, or even care for our veterans on this trajectory. It's untenable and will lead to many Americans being left out in the cold while the President and his allies reap the benefits of their positions.
Every day I speak to members of AFGE who are severely impacted by Trump's job-killing hiring freeze. And every day they ask, "When will it end?" Each has sworn an oath to the United States to do their duty and help our country. But for the last 43 days – and for the next 47 at least – that job will only get harder.
So I call on President Trump to take a look at what's happening right now in our country. I think he'd be hard pressed to say that when the brave soldiers who signed up to protect our country from all enemies foreign and domestic have to decide on caring for their children or upholding their oath, something is wrong.
So please Mr. President, rescind your Executive Order, start hiring, and let's work together on making America great again.
The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is the largest federal employee union, representing 700,000 workers in the federal government and the government of the District of Columbia.
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SOURCE American Federation of Government Employees