The American Federation of Government employees organized a rally outside of the Environmental Protection Agency in Dallas Thursday, protesting the federal government shutdown.
Some of the workers, like Rita Ware, are furloughed.
“That is all we want to do, is do our job. Be safe, for health and the human environment. We want people to breathe clean air, have clean water,” said Rita Ware.
Kyle Coats, who is a correctional officer, is going to work but not getting a check.
“They are holding my paycheck hostage,” said Coates, adding later, “Right now I have had to make the choices of what bills I am going to have to pay. Like, anything that is not essential I am going to have to get rid of until this is over.”
Payday is Friday and 800,000 federal employees will not get paychecks. Some members of congress, like Rep. Lance Gooden (R-TX 5th District), of Mesquite, have made the decision to not collect their salaries.
“It is just the right thing to do. There are folks in my district, around 38,000 employees I believe, that are federal employees. They don’t even get the option of deciding whether or not to take a paycheck,” said Gooden.
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Rep. Roger Williams (R-TX 25th District) said his salary will go to a charity in his district in Killeen.
“It is what I did last time. The fact of the matter is it is not fair if we are getting paid and the workers are not. I get that, so we did that in the last shutdown. It is the right thing to do,” said Williams.
President Trump, who visited McAllen, Texas Thursday, and Vice President Mike Pence reiterated the shut down would not be lifted until the border wall is funded.