How Does the Government Shutdown Affect Me?

CongressHow have you been affected by the government shutdown that took place on October 1, 2013? Read on to find out what the shutdown means to you and your family.

Why Did the Shutdown Occur

Lawmakers are at an impasse on a bill to finance the government. As a result, only functions that are deemed essential will operate, while all others will be shutdown, and workers in those areas furloughed or experience a delay in pay. Ironically, the shutdown may wind up costing taxpayers money down the road, since the process to initiate a shutdown does not come cheap.

Mail is Unaffected

The post office, although a branch of the federal government does not receive any government funding. Therefore, it is operating at business as usual.

Forget Museums and National Monuments: You Can’t Visit

The statue of liberty is closed, the National Zoo is closed, fountains are shut off on the National Mall, and you won’t be able to get in to any of the many parks, museums, zoos and historic places that are funded by the government.

Don’t Get Sick

While the new health care system went into effect, it has been difficult for many to get in to sign up for it. Obama care is funded differently, so it won’t be affected at all. However, veterans medical services and benefits may be delayed, the Centers of Disease Control is no longer monitoring possible outbreaks and pandemics. Meet inspection will continue, but other monitoring of food and drugs may be affected.

You’ll Have to Wait

If you are in the process of seeking out a federal loan to buy a house, forget it. You’ll have to wait. The same thing goes for getting a gun permit, a visa or a passport.

Federal Workers to Be Furloughed

If you work for the government, you may be furloughed or asked to continue to work without pay.

The Court System

The federal court system will continue to operate as normal for the next 10 days. After that, a funding solution would be needed.

At School

Elementary and secondary schools are covered through the first week of October. After that, many federally funded programs will be affected.


Air traffic controllers will remain on the job. As for public buses and trains, they may operate for a while on revenue, but most rely on federal subsidies, so service could be affected in the long-term.

Congress, the President and the Military

Congress and the president will continue to receive a salary. At least one member of congress has said he would donate his salary to charity while the shutdown is in effect. Military personnel will be paid, although members of the National Guard may be furloughed.

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About Mary Ann Romans

Mary Ann Romans is a freelance writer, online content manager, wife and mother of three children. She lives in Pennsylvania in the middle of the woods but close enough to Target and Home Depot. The author of many magazine, newspaper and online articles, Mary Ann enjoys writing about almost any subject. "Writing gives me the opportunity to both learn interesting information, and to interact with wonderful people." Mary Ann has written more than 5,000 blogs for since she started back in December 2006. Contact her at maromans AT or visit her personal blog