Yankton Federal Prison Camp Employees Work with No Pay - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Yankton Federal Prison Camp Employees Work with No Pay

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The government has been shut down for almost a week.

And that's how long it has been since employees at the Federal Prison Camp in Yankton have been paid for their work.

"People have bills to pay, families to support, groceries to buy, and we don't know when we're going to get out next paycheck," said Michele Kunkel, Local 4040 Union President.

Employees at the Yankton Federal Prison are fed up with the lack of action by congress. George Taylor is a retired Minnesota state employee and knows what it's like when budget problems hurt your job.

"The sad part is that the ones that implement this are still getting their paychecks while the other people have to do without and Think that's totally unfair," said Taylor.

"I am almost ashamed to be a federal worker right now in a situation that were working or not getting paid," said Kunkel.

Michele Kunkel is the president of the union which represents prison camp employees and she tells sit's a challenging situation.

"When they can't live paycheck to paycheck then they use credit cards, and then they charge up, and that gets out of hand, some people and up losing their homes and other things," said Taylor.

Both Kunkel and her husband work at the prison and have no income for the time being.

"Purchasing less, only what I need at least until I know that I'm going to get a paycheck," said Kunkel.

But, the over 100 employees at the Yankton facility remain dedicated and continue to work while hoping for change.

"As elected officials, they're supposed to compromise,it's not all one way or the other, there has to be compromise in anything,"said Taylor.

"At this point we be happy with a continued resolution just to find some salaries so we could get paid," said Kunkel.

Kunkel says her family is cutting corners to make ends meet, but if the shutdown lasts much longer, she might have to rely on her children for help.

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