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Customs Agent’s Wife Says Government Shutdown Could Be A Financial Disaster For Family

A customs agent wears a patch for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agen...

Credit: Associated Press

Above: A customs agent wears a patch for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency, Friday, Oct. 27, 2017.

KPBS had a chance to speak with the spouse of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent who works at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry.

She is afraid her family could face retaliation for talking, so KPBS agreed to just use her first name — Eva.

Her family has about a month's worth of savings, Eva said, but are already using credit cards to keep up with bills.

"Paying for a condo here takes a huge chunk of our money," Eva said. "Paying for daycare here takes a huge chunk of our money. We’re not really left with any disposable income anyway at any given month. After that month we’re going to have to assess, do I close my business so I can stay home and watch my daughter? It is going to change our lives if this goes on for more than a month?"

RELATED: Some Mortgage Deals Are In Limbo As Government Shutdown Drags On

Eva said her family also has two car payments.

She said her husband loves his job and protecting this country, but just wishes he was being paid for his work.

"I bring in some money — but he is the breadwinner," she said. "We rely on him to keep us afloat."

Eva is worried that if the shutdown goes on for months, as President Trump has hinted at, the family could lose its home.

"In some ways, we might have to plan like it might go on for a few months," Eva said. "And if it does go on for a few months we’re going to have to make some real changes that are going to be irreversible."


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Matt Hoffman
General Assignment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI am a general assignment reporter for KPBS. In addition to covering the latest news and issues that are relevant to the San Diego community, I like to dig deeper to find the voices and perspectives that other media often miss.

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