More Anchorage firms help furloughed federal workers
It's a tough day for Tasha Huhta. In fact, these days are extra-challenging for her during the partial federal government shutdown.
"I work for the Bureau of Land Management," Huhta said.
She is not the only member of her family off the job as a result of the shutdown.
"My husband and I are both furloughed federal employees, so it's a double hit to our paycheck," she said.
But there's one less thing she and her husband have to worry about for now: staying in shape.
Body Renew will allow any furloughed federal worker to work out free at any of its locations. Its owner, Brian Horschel, says he just wants to help out his neighbors.
"Right now, there's a large part of our community that's hurting, they're not receiving paychecks because of the government shutdown," Horschel said. "We just wanted to make sure they still have a place to get some fitness while they're not working, or not getting paid at least."
"It doesn't make anything less difficult, but it certainly makes things a little easier, knowing that's there's people willing to help you out and cheer you on," Huhta said.
Body Renew is part of a growing list of business that help furloughed workers. Another is telecommunications provider GCI.
"We first decided to do this around the first of the year," said GCI spokeswoman Heather Handyside.
The company now offers affected government employees payment plans for services for the duration of the event.
"I think for a lot of our employees, this is personal. Many of them are former federal employees," Handyside said. "Their spouses have worked for the federal government; many of their family members, their neighbors work for the federal government, so they must know how they feel."
Meanwhile, Huhta passes the time away from work.
"This furlough, I think, has been extra long, it's just a little difficult with the environment we're in," Huhta said.
Editor's note: GCI is KTVA's parent company.
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