For the first time in history the 42,000 active-duty men and women of the Coast Guard worked without pay due to a lapse in appropriations during the longest partial shutdown in United States history earlier this year. As the Department of Homeland Security was reduced to essential personnel, Coasties relied on the charity of their neighbors and communities to help fill the gap as they wondered when their next paycheck would come. The Navy League, and many American citizens were outraged that we would place that stress on members of our Armed Forces.
The Navy League is launching this campaign to support H.R. 367/S.21 the Pay Our Coast Guard Parity Act, which would ensure active-duty service members are paid during a government shutdown.
In January Chairman of the House Transportation Committee Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Senate Majority Whip John Thune (R-SD) introduced this bi-partisan, bi-cameral bill, but it had not moved forward since despite being co-sponsored by 186 members in the House and 40 in the Senate. At the end of March however the legislation passed the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, clearing the path for it to be put on the calendar for a vote by the full House.
Why you should take action
No man or woman who volunteers to serve our country protecting its waters, and the citizens who live along them, should ever be forced to work without pay.
- Bill to Protect U.S. Coast Guard Pay Moves Forward (3/27/19)
- Commandant Karl Schulz shares video criticizing "unacceptable" shutdown.
- Former Commandant Thad Allen describes harm to Coast Guard families.