AUSTIN, Texas (FOX 7 Austin) - President Trump has promised to ensure back pay is given to federal workers. But, many local organizations will continue to meet basic needs for workers, until that promise is kept.
"Relief is not what I feel, ease on some levels that the immediate crisis is over but that's coupled with just as strong as a determination to make sure it doesn't happen again."
Reaction, hours after learning President Trump has ended the partial government shutdown, after 35 days. "I'm mad I'm really mad. We were out there at our demonstration today and the notion that these folks who do such critical work for our country that we're actually setting up food banks for those that are working, something is wrong with that picture."
Rick Levy is the President for the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations. AFL CIO for short.
He says the road to recovery for hundreds of thousands of families in Texas is far from over.
"Thankfully this means they can go back to work and get paid. Which is a revolutionary concept you should be paid for your work. Hopefully they get the back pay they are due. Not just the federal workers but the contractors who have been affected by this shutdown. They get their back pay and for those that have had to take out loans they don't get interest for those that get mortgage payments they don't make that up for them. It will continue to be an issue for federal workers."
Thoughts echoed by US Representative Lloyd Doggett. "I had so many people call saying landlords who wouldn't cooperate or how they're going to put food on the table. Or pay an insurance premium to process their checks as soon as possible. And for them to begin planning for a future that does not guarantee checks will be there come February,” Doggett says.
Friday morning, dozens of government workers, alongside Levy rallied outside of Senator John Cornyn's office with a message for him, and leaders in Washington, hours before the president announced the shutdown was ending. “It's not easy but we are here to do our job, to keep American people safe,” says Richard Odele.
Odele has picked up side gigs just to make ends meet.
“It's depressing. I’m getting help from my mom and dad,” he adds.
So the most pressing question is when will the federal workers finally get paid?
Doggett says, “My guess is it will take several days because probably some people that will need to process the payments are among those who were furloughed. And when they're back on the job Monday I'm sure they'll make this a top priority because they need the money the Trump shutdown has denied them."
In the meantime, AFL CIO says they've been collecting boxes and boxes of food still available for federal workers to pick up, doing whatever they can to support them. They say to call their office or visit their website if you need help at 512-477-6195.