Shutdown Squeeze: Agent Loses Financial Security While Working Border Security


The thing is, "morale is in the dumps," said the Border Patrol agent who spoke to ABC News. "We don't see any fix."

"The uniformed guys are working. We're out there still doing the same hours, apprehending illegal entries and everything," he said. "But they're telling us we're not going to get paid come payday."

Agents are keeping logs of the hours they work and submitting them "as if we were gonna get paid," the agent told ABC News.

Federal workers who've been deemed essential -- or "excepted" -- and told to work during the government shutdown will only get paid if Congress agrees to that while resolving the impasse in Washington. And even then, "when you'll receive the check you don't know," the agent said.

It's essentially too late to financially prepare for the shutdown, according to the agent. Adjusting spending habits won't do much good.

"The bills that come in now that we have to pay are bills that were acquired before the shutdown, so they're still due," he said. "There's nothing you can do about it. It's not like all of a sudden, now, you can say, 'Don't buy this, don't purchase that.'

"I don't know if I'm going to get paid, but I do know that my mortgage bill is due," he added. "I know that my car payment's due. ... What do you tell the mortgage company? What do you tell the electric company?"

He said he and his wife don't talk about the situation much.

"We're pretty quiet about it now," he said. "There's nothing to say."

But he noted that he and his wife now "constantly" watch TV news hoping to see a report that the shutdown is over.

Until then, he said, he's telling his story hoping "a politician actually cares and does something."

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