Federal employees furloughed during the government shutdown and working without pay have been given some pretty dumb advice regarding how to keep their finances afloat while President Donald Trump carries on his weeks-long temper tantrum for his proposed border wall. And while some of that demeaning, dumb-as-rocks advice lives on, such as the suggestion that federal workers do odd jobs for their landlords in lieu of rent, the Coast Guard figured out that, uhh, these recommendations aren’t that helpful.
On Wednesday, the Coast Guard removed a tip sheet for its 8,500-person civilian workforce on “managing your finances during a furlough” from its website after the Washington Post inquired about it. The tip sheet, preserved by the Post, suggested furloughed employees supplement their lost income by having garage sales, selling their possessions in classified ads, babysitting or walking pets, tutoring, teaching music lessons, or even by becoming a “mystery shopper.”
While the Department of Defense was funded before the shutdown, the Coast Guard falls under the Department of Homeland Security, which has also shut down amid Boss Baby Trump’s demand for $5.7 billion to build an ineffectual border wall. About 6,400 of the branch’s civilian workforce have been furloughed, while 2,100 deemed “essential” are working without pay, along with 41,000 active-duty Coast Guardsmen, the Post reported.
The tip sheet also advised Coast Guard service members on understanding details of the furlough, assessing their financial situation, changing their spending, and other aspects of finance management. However, as the Post pointed out, the sheet also suggested that, as a final option, employees consider declaring bankruptcy.
Along with taking down the tips, spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Scott McBride told the paper the suggestions don’t “reflect the Coast Guard’s current efforts to support our workforce during this lapse in appropriations.”