WASHINGTON, DC – The following statement by Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-5) in support of federal employees during ongoing budget negotiations was read today at a press conference led by National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) President Colleen M. Kelley and President J. David Cox of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE). Colleen Kelley read Congressman Hoyer’s statement at the press conference:
“I stand in solidarity with AFGE and NTEU today - and with all those who serve in our nation’s federal workforce. I vehemently oppose efforts to target and single out these hardworking, middle-class Americans who play a critical role in maintaining the safety, security, and well-being of our nation.
“Federal employees and retirees have already contributed nearly $114 billion toward deficit reduction in the form of pay freezes and increased pension contributions – on top of the unnecessary furloughs caused by the Republican-led government shutdown and their irrational sequestration policy. To continue targeting one group to carry the burden of fixing our deficits is absolutely unacceptable. This denigration of our nation’s federal employees doesn’t just harm our ability to recruit and retain the top-notch workforce needed to serve the American people – it harms the American people who access the services of our government. We should be recognizing and thanking our federal employees for their hard work and important contributions to our economy and our security – not making them into a scapegoat for our nation’s challenges. I join NTEU, AFGE, and others in strongly urging Congress to treat our government employees with the respect and dignity they deserve.”