Dover AFB Workers Impacted by Shutdown - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dover AFB Workers Impacted by Shutdown

(Photo: WBOC) (Photo: WBOC)

DOVER, Del.- More than half of the civilian workers at the Dover Air Force Base were furloughed Monday after the government shutdown.

There were nearly 1,000 civilian workers on the base and 500 of them were sent home Tuesday.

"We have impacted real families, real people," said Col. Rick Moore, commander of the 436th Airlift Wing. "We have sent them home without pay for a period of time that is not yet defined."

The civilian workers that remain on the base were kept to support flying operations and wartime operations that the base is currently involved in.

According to Moore, they determined which workers would remain after looking at each specific individual position and compared that to the guidance they received from the Office of Secretary of Defense. The civilian workers that were furloughed had four hours to clean out their offices and go home.

"Our civilian workforce is I think strongly frustrated," said Moore. "This is so close on the heels of the administrative furlough that we underwent this summer and I think that with combined with the uncertainty they're feeling is a significant drain on the moral of the civilian workforce."

There were other changes to the Dover Air Force Base. Services like the library were closed down. On Tuesday, the commissary was closed as well. There will also be no education assistance until a conclusion has been made. That affects the countless men and women that depend on those benefits to get through school.

Sgt. Crystal Mallory goes to nursing school at Delaware Tech and is almost finished with her nursing degree. But she relied heavily on the education assistance to get her by. If the shutdown lasts long enough where she cannot receive this funding for her last semester, she will have to start from scratch.

"That is a lot of time I've given up," said Mallory. "That's a lot of money the air force has given up because they've put a lot of money into my education that I would then have to restart over again."

According to Moore, the base will continue to support all of their wartime operations for now. He thinks it be about a week before it begins to run out of cash. If they get to that point they will have to reevaluate the situation.

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