MILWAUKEE — Protecting our country and not getting paid?
The government shutdown has some servicemen and servicewomen struggling to make ends meet, and although the checks have temporarily stopped, it hasn't stopped them from working.
“That’s right. That’s part of the oath that they took. It’s to stand ready at all times regardless and to pay the price no matter what that is, and this is the price in 2019 right now,” said Elizabeth Hazlett, the USO director of operations and a Coast Guard mom.
Now in its 25th day, this is the longest shutdown in U.S. history, and members of the Coast Guard are just one group going without pay.
Hazlett’s son, Ben Berg, has been in the Coast Guard for 10 years. He’s from Milwaukee but is stationed in Sacramento, California. He plans to get married in the next few months.
“(The shutdown is preventing him from starting his family). A lot of the things that he’s worried about are the same things that any person would be worried about if they were starting a new family,” Hazlett said.
As the shutdown continues, Hazlett and the local USO are rallying to keep Coast Guard members such as her son afloat, collecting monetary donations on their behalf until they can go back to cashing checks.
"A lot of the things that he’s worried about are the same things that any person would be worried about if they were starting a new family.” — Elizabeth Hazlett, speaking about her son, who is in the Coast Guard
“We’re just trying to help them meet some of the basic needs that they might have like groceries and gas,” Hazlett said.