Ten percent of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) workers scheduled to work Sunday decided not to show, pleading strained pockets as they work without pay during the partial government shutdown.
Many of the TSA employees who did not work Sunday cited “financial limitations” as the reason for their absence, according to officials, CNN reported. “Yesterday’s complete figures show that TSA experienced a national rate of 10 percent of unscheduled absences compared to a 3.1 percent rate one year ago on the same day, Jan. 20, 2018,” TSA said in a Monday statement, according to CNN.
TSA workers have been calling out sick after the shutdown has required them to work without pay, according to senior agency officials, CNN reported Jan. 4.
Officials have worried that the shortage of workers could make travel less secure and result in longer than normal queues. On the whole, however, wait times in security lines have not risen significantly, although “some airports experienced longer than usual wait times,” according to a statement from TSA.
Roughly 55,000 TSA employees are considered “essential,” allowing airports to remain up and running as they normally would when the government is not shut down. The shutdown also hasn’t affected air-traffic-control safety, according to data from U.S. aviation officials.
“We have not observed any appreciable difference in performance over the last several weeks compared to the same periods during the previous two years,” a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said in a Monday statement, according to WSJ. (RELATED: TSA Official Threatens To Classify Workers As Awol As Shutdown ‘Sickout’ Looms)
From the shutdown‘s start on Dec. 22 to Jan. 4, workers calling out sick increased between 200 and 300 percent at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, CNN reported. Officials expect those percentages to grow as workers continue to miss paychecks during the partial-government shutdown.
The shutdown is the longest in U.S. history and centers over a battle on border wall funding. The Trump administration offered a bill over the weekend, which included a compromise to re-open government agencies that are now closed, Fox News reported. Democrats rejected the deal.
Roughly 800,000 federal employees missed their first paychecks Jan. 11.
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