Senators Tell Hagel to Pay the Guard

NGAUS Washington Report

(Oct. 4, 2013) NGAUS supports an effort by a bipartisan group of senators to find a way to pay National Guardsmen during the government shutdown.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., and 44 additional bipartisan senators today sent a letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel urging that the National Guard and Reserves, and the civilians who support the troops, receive pay during the government shutdown.

 “Our nearly 45,000 members, all of them current or former National Guard officers, applaud this bipartisan effort to do what's right for all of our force," said retired Maj. Gen. Gus Hargett, the president of NGAUS.  "Sequester, and now this shutdown, are quickly degrading both military readiness and morale.  We thank all those in Congress who are truly putting America first and working to quickly stem this dangerous slide before it also puts the nation's defense and security at risk.”

Even though the Pay Our Military Act was quickly signed into law before the government shut down to make sure all military personnel receive pay, there have been reports that many service members or civilians, especially in the National Guard and Reserves, have been furloughed without compensation.

“Before our government shut down, Washington unanimously agreed to make sure paychecks go out to our service members and those who dedicate their lives to protect us each and every day,” Manchin said. “It is simply not fair and not right that the National Guard and Reserves and other civilians who also work on our national security have been furloughed and are forced to stay at home without receiving their paychecks. I am encouraged that so many of my colleagues on both sides of the aisle have swiftly come together to make this wrong a right.”

The entire press release and the letter to Hagel can be found here.