Agency: Government workers could do painting or carpentry work to help pay rent during shutdown
The U.S. Office of Personnel Management has offered federal workers affected by the partial government shutdown a guide for negotiating with creditors, landlords and mortgage companies while their income is cut off.
The Thursday tweet notes that workers should consult with a "personal attorney" for advice but offers templates for how one might seek financial assistance for various financial obligations.
Among the suggested strategies: A furloughed employee might offer to trade maintenance services such as painting or carpentry work in exchange for a reduction in rent.
About 800,000 federal employees are currently on furlough or working without pay as disputes over border wall funding have led to the shutdown of nine federal departments and several smaller agencies since Saturday.
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The OPM's tweet linked to a guide offering multiple sample letters that could be used to seek financial assistance. One such letter asks a creditor to reduce a monthly payment:
"As we discussed, I am a Federal employee who has recently been furloughed due to a lack of funding of my agency. Because of this, my income has been severely cut and I am unable to pay the entire cost of my monthly payments, along with my other expenses."
It concludes: "I appreciate your willingness to work with me and your understanding during this difficult time."
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