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Efforts To Help Coast Guard Members Who Aren't Getting Paid

Jan 17, 2019

U.S. Coast Guard members are still on the job, rescuing people and guarding national waters.

But with the government shutdown in effect, they're not getting paid. 

Jennifer Fyke is a Senior Director of Communications with the Coast Guard Foundation. Her organization is working with the Coast Guard Chief Petty Officers Association, taking public donations to provide $100 gift cards to as many members as it can.

"We're not intending to support every coast guard member, unfortunately, we don't have the resources for that," Fyke said. "Nor do we have the resources to replace paychecks, but we're hoping the $100 will help them get a little bit further to have groceries, gas."

Nearly 5,000 active-duty Coast Guard members call Florida home. Fyke said they're embedded in their communities, so there have been pop-up food banks set up across the country for them, including locations in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. 

"There's the Coast Guard Mutual Assistance which is helping Coast Guard families, by giving interest-free loans to help get them through this first round of lapse of appropriations, the Red Cross is partnering with them, so there's lots of amazing individual people and organizations stepping up, saying, 'we know the value of this service, you are not forgotten,'" Fyke said.