Coast Guard Suggests Employees Babysit, Hold Garage Sales to Survive Shutdown

The Coast Guard Support Program published a five-page tip sheet titled “Managing your finances during a furlough” that suggests workers can weather the shutdown by holding garage sales, babysitting, or serving as a “mystery shopper.” The Coast Guard removed the tip sheet from the support program’s website late Wednesday morning. “While it may be uncomfortable to deal with the hard facts, it’s best to avoid the ‘hide your head in the sand’ reaction,” the tip sheet said. “Stay in charge of the situation by getting a clear understanding of what’s happening.” About 6,400 members of the Coast Guard are on indefinite furlough, while 2,100 are working without pay after being identified as essential workers. The Coast Guard receives funding from the Department of Homeland Security, and is the only branch of the military without secured appropriations as a result of the shutdown. “[The tips do not] reflect the Coast Guard’s current efforts to support our workforce during this lapse in appropriations,” Lt. Cmdr. Scott McBride, a service spokesman, told The Washington Post. “As such, this guidance has been removed.”