What would another government shutdown do to the average US citizen?


Hart Van Denburg/CPR News

TSA agents working at Denver International Airport

Recent talks about government shutdowns have spiked recently but what would a government shutdown actually do?
A government shutdown stops all government services that are deemed “unessential.” Last government shutdown in 2019 led to the TSA being shut down, making TSA agents work without pay for the duration of the shutdown.
But why would a government shutdown happen? It happens when the government fails to reach a spending agreement and shuts down because there was no budget agreement.
Now on Sept. 30, 2021, Joe Biden passed a bill prolonging the deadline to Dec. 3. Now if a shutdown had happened, Biden said that it wouldn’t affect public health, so the fight against COVID-19 would have not been impacted.
But again, non-essential government services would be shut down or once again, people would be forced to work without pay. This means that visas, Social Security benefits, and even veteran benefits will be delayed because workers will be without pay and may not process your request.
Last government shutdown in 2019 led to the TSA being shut down, making TSA agents work without pay for the duration of the shutdown. Airports were delayed and lines were extremely long if you were traveling during the shutdown. If you did travel during the government shutdown in 2019, those security agents were all working there without pay.
The IRS will also face delays because again federal workers will be without pay unless authorized by congress. So taxation delays are inevitable.
National-park services will be closed completely so if you’re planning on traveling during a government shutdown, expect some plans to change.
But what will still remain open? Anything deemed essential to human life and safety will be operational such as armed forces, border patrol, police forces, and firefighting will all be operational. Along with these, Medicare is another area of concern for people but if you are enrolled in Medicare, expect it to continue without change.
Now all of the information is based on previous government shutdowns so some agencies that were closed may be open this time and some that were open may be closed, but more than likely most healthcare related services will remain open due to the pandemic.
So a government shutdown would make life harder but it wouldn’t change too much for the average person. Now for people working in federal agencies, that’s a different story, but for the average person, it isn’t something you should worry about.