10/07/13 Congresswoman Jackie Walorski and Congressman Paul Cook introduced H.R. 3232, the “Support Our Armed Forces Act,” to ensure that all reservists, members of the National Guard, dual status technicians, civilian employees, and contractors of the Department of Defense (DoD) continue to work and be paid during the government shutdown.
“It is unfair and unsafe for Congress to jeopardize employment for the very individuals who devote their careers to the continued security of our nation,” said Walorski, a member of the House Armed Services Committee. “This bill provides essential support for hundreds of hardworking Hoosiers at Grissom Air Reserve Base in Miami County and ensures all of Indiana’s reservists, guardsmen, and civilian employees continue to maintain operational readiness for Indiana.”
Last week, Congress passed legislation that was signed into law to pay members of the Armed Forces, including active duty members of the Guard and Reserves. This measure also provided the authority for the Secretaries of Defense and Homeland Security to pay civilian employees and contractors engaged in support of the armed forces during the same period. However, these civilians have not yet been returned to work.
H.R.3232 ensures these civilian employees and contractors will be returned to work and will receive pay during the government shutdown, and it also provides pay for inactive members of the Guard and Reserves. According to reports, around 600 fulltime civilian employees and Air Force reservists have been furloughed at Grissom Air Reserve Base since October 1st. 1,000 Indiana National Guard employees throughout Indiana were also furloughed.
Grissom Air Reserve base is home to the 434th Air Refueling Wing. It is just one of five Air Reserve Bases in the nation, providing support for the Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and allied nations.