Furloughed Federal Employees Take to Facebook to Vent

A growing number of federal employees are taking to the web to vent their frustrations, advice and stories about the lost time at work.

Have you been furloughed by your agency? How are you spending your time during the furlough?

A growing number of federal employees are participating in a Facebook group to vent some of their frustrations with the missed work days. It is an open group anybody can join. The stated purpose behind the group is as follows:

This group was created to share stories, photos and reflections about how we spend our furlough days. It is a deliberate effort to bring a little laughter and levity to an otherwise difficult situation. If you have friends from other Departments or Agencies who are subject to furloughs, please invite them. Please promote this site via your own networks so that people see the faces and hear the stories of federal workers who are caught up in the political drama of sequester. Nothing about this group is sanctioned by anything or anyone official.

The group has nearly 3,000 members as of the time of this writing and also appears to be drawing a steady stream of comments from its members. They range from people asking for advice on saving money due to the lost wages to saying they should be thankful they haven’t lost their jobs to voicing support and encouragement for the federal employees who are furloughed.

“I just wanted to post my support for all of you facing these ridiculous cuts. I am not a Federal employee, but work with many of you from DOD and the military,” wrote one poster.

In describing how he would spend the leisure time on his new boat, one person wrote, “Bought this 2 weeks ago in preparation for several long weekends ahead. I call it the Furlough boat.”

Another person added, “So was playing with numbers and the amount of my pay I’m losing is equal to the entire amount of government contributions to my TSP for the year.”

One person said, “Painted my house instead of paying someone else to do it. Also avoiding restaurants or any other luxery purchases. My pain is also the pain of my community.”

These are but a small sampling of the virtually endless stream of comments people are posting. Check out the group page for more: How I Spent My Furlough Day (A Facebook account is required to view the page).

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of FedSmith.com. He has over 20 years of combined experience in media and government services, having worked at two government contracting firms and an online news and web development company prior to his current role at FedSmith.