Government shutdown: How it affects you & your family
The U.S. government has entered its first shutdown in 17 years earlier today after Congress failed to reach an agreement to fund federal agencies by their midnight deadline. Not only are thousands of government workers out of a job indefinitely, but the work of national organizations in charge of everything from disease control to nutrition could also come to a halt. Here's what you need to know about how this shutdown affects you and your family:
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- As mentioned before, as many as 800,000 federal employees are now forced to take unpaid leave for an unknown period of time.
- The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has to halt the seasonal influenza program that monitors the spread of the flu.
- The Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, a program designed to provide healthy food for low-income new moms and moms-to-be, will have its federal funding cut.
- Tourists will be shut out or forced to leave any national parks and major monuments in Washington, D.C. and some other states (like the Statue of Liberty in New York City), affecting the community and all the small businesses that rely on the steady flow of outside visitors.
- A federal shutdown will only worsen the nation's budget deficit.
- Routine safety inspections of food--other than high-risk recalls--by the FDA will be suspended.
- The Labor Department will have to stop most of their safety and discrimination investigations in the workplace.
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