Locals Doing What They Can To Help Federal Workers Impacted By Government Shutdown
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Volunteers from South Florida Muslim groups pitched in Thursday at a Fort Luderdale warehouse, packing a truck with food to deliver to Coast Guard workers at their base in Opa-locka.
It's part of an ongoing effort to help South Florida federal workers who have been working without pay during the partial government shutdown that has entered a second month.
"One of the golden principles of Islam is the caring and sharing. We cannot go to bed unless we check with our brothers and sisters if they have food to eat," said Mohamed Javed with Friends of Humanity.
The United Way of Miami-Dade made a donation of canned food and dry foods, which the Coast Guard's Chief Petty Officer's Association will be distributing Friday morning.
Also contributing is an umbrella group of veterans called Veterans Collective. They've teamed up with the Chief Petty Officer's Association to channel donated goods and monetary donations to the 1500 Coast Guard personnel in the greater Miami area.
"My organization, the Chief Petty Officer's Association, what we do is get those donations and products into the hands of members affected by this," said Chief Petty Officer Kyle Pulk. "Our goal is to raise money to help out those missing their paychecks."
Elsewhere in Miami, TSA security screeners lined up for vegetables, canned goods and milk Thursday courtesy of the non-profit Feeding South Florida.
"This is about the people keeping us safe and secure being secure where they are getting their next meal," said Paco Velez, CEO of Feeding south Florida.
The group also sent a truckload of supplies to distribute to federal prison guards in Miami.
The food is enough for a few meals but a lifeline for families who have no income and no savings.
Earlier in the day, the head of the Coast Guard took to social media to echo the frustration of everyone waiting for something to break the impasse in Washington.
"I find it unacceptable Coast Guard men and women have to rely on food pantries to get through day-to-day life as service members," he said.
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