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Sep 29, 2023
Posted Under: Advocacy

The 2018 federal government shutdown lasted 35 days. Today we are standing on the precipice of another shutdown. To avoid a “partial shutdown,” Congress must pass a stopgap bill known as a continuing resolution – the CR – by tomorrow to provide temporary funding to run the government.

A federal shutdown translates to real and potentially devastating impacts on people, communities, and nonprofits that Americans rely on every day. Previous shutdowns proved in too many ways that nonprofits will once again be called on to provide a safety net for individuals who are without a paycheck. These same nonprofits already are operating within fragile systems with too few employees and fewer volunteers and philanthropic investments, which are the result of pandemic shifts and a lack of funding from state governments that are failing to pay their grants and contracts on time.

A federal shutdown will have immediate effects on Alaska nonprofits and the people they serve, especially our most vulnerable Alaskans and our military personnel. We already see nonprofits that are unable to make payroll because of the state’s failure to pay grants and contracts on time. Those who are fortunate to have savings are drawing deeply from these accounts to keep their services available while others are furloughing their workforce. A federal shutdown only exacerbates the state’s ability to fulfill its promises while cutting off other anticipated avenues of budgeted funding. When this is combined with a greater demand for essential social services and a reduced ability for Alaskans to donate and volunteer in their communities, our state’s waning economy will sustain another blow.

Your voice matters. Today we urge you to stand for your mission. 

 Take a few minutes right now to make it clear to our federal delegation that we need them to stand with all Alaskans and Alaska’s nonprofits. It is time to share your story of what a shutdown will mean to those you employ and especially to those you serve.

Here are two important steps you can take:

Today, call AND email President Biden, Senator Murkowski, Senator Sullivan, and Representative Peltola. Tell them how your organization and the people you serve will be affected by the federal shutdown. Be clear you want an immediate resolution to avoid (or limit) a shutdown.

Engage your team. Make a plan for your staff and board. Know what a government shutdown means for your organization’s budget, programs, and staff. Be ready to implement your plan.

Need help? Call us. We are standing by your side.