BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - If a deadline comes and goes with no agreement in Congress, many families in Western New York will be affected. For some, a government shutdown means unpaid days off until a deal is reached.
"The call centers will be shut down as far as I'm aware," said a VA employee who asked not to be identified.
For others, it means coming to work but having to wait indefinitely for a paycheck. That's not easy.
"Oh yeah, I'm paycheck to paycheck. New homeowner. Little kids. New cars. Stuff adds up quick," the VA employee said.
It's frustrating to him that partisan bickering between Republicans and Democrats in Washington can mean for so many the difference between working or not.
"You're putting way too many lives in jeopardy over a political squabble," the VA employee said.
Potentially thousands of government workers in Western New York are affected, that includes many at the federal building downtown, border workers and technicians at the Niagara Falls airbase. Nearly 600 workers there would face furlough if the government shuts down.
And there many civilian workers relying on government contracts. Their work could be affected as well.
The VA worker News 4 spoke with is thankful his job is deemed "essential." He will get paid, eventually. But the same cannot be said for many of his colleagues.
"I feel bad. Their lives are up in the air at the moment. They don't know when their bills will be paid, when they will be able to go back. You have child care issues. I feel terrible for them," the VA employee said.
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