Central Florida feels impact of partial government shutdown
'They're really hurting American families here,' local man says
ORLANDO, Fla. – It has been nearly two weeks since the partial government shutdown began and there is still no end in sight.
Right now, negotiations are at a standstill between the White House and congressional Democrats, 13 days after the standoff began.
President Donald Trump wants funding for a $5 billion border wall, but Democrats say not a chance.
Democratic leaders scheduled a pair of votes on a package of bills to end the shutdown that would also give Congress more time to negotiate a deal with the White House over border funding, but even if the bills are approved, the shutdown will likely go on since they still have to clear the GOP-controlled Senate.
That impact is being felt across the nation and in Central Florida.
Hundreds of thousands of people locally are out of work because of the shutdown.
Quentin Washington is one of them.
"My initial thought was this is going to go on forever," Washington said.
Washington works for a subcontractor to NASA.
Since the partial government shut down almost two weeks ago, he's been out of work.
"It's a very interesting situation. I mean, they're saying there's a possibility that we could get back pay for the time that, you know, we weren't there but there's a possibility that we won't either," Washington said.
He's one of the fortunate few who is still getting a paycheck thanks to the company he works for, but there's no telling when that stream of income will come to an end.
"It's like yeah, we can charge to the shutdown, but next week is like alright, now you have to use up your (paid time off) and then if after that... after we are out of our PTO, are we going to get paid after that? If we run out of our PTO. If it's an extended shutdown," Washington said.
He was prepared financially, but for other people he knows the uncertainty and unknown is daunting.
"There's a lot of people who are stressed out about this situation because maybe they're not so prepared or maybe they don't have two incomes or maybe they are on a paycheck-to-paycheck basis," Washington said. "I think that people need to understand that there's hundreds of thousands of people that are impacted by this decision and you know, we need to get back to work as soon as possible. They're really hurting American families here."
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