Chula Vista Church Provides Food To TSA Workers Impacted By Government Shutdown
Thursday, January 17, 2019
Credit: Matt Hoffman/KPBS News
Milk, bread, meat and vegetables are all part of a food bank put on for Transportation Security Administration workers at The Promise Church in Chula Vista.
"If we place ourselves in their situation, I know it’s not easy for them to ask for food," said the church's Director of Social Assistance Anna Alas. "We just want to show them that we’re for them — we’re here for everyone — but they’re federal employees that are here providing a service for us citizens of the United States and we want to give that back to them."
The food bank on Wednesday helped more than 60 TSA employees and their families.
"Cut my cost for food down 95 percent," said 14-year TSA worker Ron Gerber, who went to the food bank last week, too. "They were very generous last week. Eggs, bread, lunch meat, frozen meat, desserts. I can’t say enough about how they’ve been here. I’ve never seen an outpouring like that and they don’t know us."
Gerber is one of the thousands of federal workers going without a paycheck.
"It’s the uncertainty that really hurts," he said. "You have no idea when the money is going to start coming in."
Gerber said he has a mortgage and credit cards bills to pay. He has already had to dip into savings and does not know how much longer he can work without getting paid.
"I can think about do I really want to stay — you know, how long can I hold out without money," Gerber said. "Any other job would pay anything and this one doesn’t pay anything right now."
The Promise Church said it will continue to provide food for TSA workers and their families until the government shutdown is over.
"If anyone wants to help out, we do need your support," Alas said. "Toiletries, diapers, wipes, anything that you can think of. We have very many young families that have been showing up to the food bank today. They need our support."
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