Americans Across the Country: Sequestration Has To Go

Republican leaders say they are committed to keeping harmful cuts from sequestration in place. But from furloughed workers to home-bound seniors losing Meals on Wheels to scientists unable to conduct research, Americans across the country are speaking up about the impact of sequestration. And it’s time Republicans listened.

Many Republicans in Washington D.C. are focused on keeping sequestration in place…

Senator Risch (R-ID): The Debate Over Sequestration Is “In The Rearview Mirror.” “’It’s just not a front burner issue with the majority of the American people and that’s what drives things around here,’ said James E. Risch, R-Idaho. ‘There’s no discussion about the sequester anymore. It’s gone. It’s in the rearview mirror.’” [CQ Roll Call, 6/26/13]

Senator Paul (R-KY): “We Survived. The World Isn’t Ending.” “‘On the sequester, I think we're actually winning the battle on this, the public relations battle. The president said 'the sky is falling, the world will end, oh my, we cannot possibly have the sequester’,’ Paul said. ‘But we survived. The world isn't ending.’” [CNN, 6/28/13]

Representative Mike Pompeo (R-KS): “In My Judgment, The Pain Has Not Been Too Great.” “Though he questions how some of the cuts have been implemented, Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Wichita, thinks the sequester was a positive step toward getting federal spending under control. ‘In my judgment, the pain has not been too great,’ he told The Eagle editorial board this week.” [Wichita Eagle Editorial Board, 4/13/13]

Representative Billy Long (R-MO): People “Want To See More Sequestration, Not Less.” “‘The people that I've talked to seem to be doing well,’ Long told local news affiliate KOLR10 News. ‘In fact, when I got out in restaurants here in town, people come up to me. They want to see more sequestration, not less." Long said people in other parts of the country may be feeling pain as a result of the $85 billion in cuts. But not his community. "We haven't seen any measurable effect here at all,’ he said.” [Huffington Post, 5/1/13]

…but Americans across the country are seeing the impact of sequestration in their day-to-day lives, and they know it has to go.


Federal Public Defender for North Alabama Kevin Butler: “‘The constitution mandates quality counsel for all persons regardless of their financial status…Sequestration is severely limiting this constitutional right.’” [Birmingham News, 4/11/13]

Parent Ashley Ruffin of Jefferson County, Alabama, where sequestration forced a Head Start program to close for ten weeks: “‘As a parent what do you expect me to do with my child for 10 weeks? You know, he's in a learning environment. I don't want to have him go somewhere for 10 weeks, where he is not learning…” [WVTM, 5/1/13]


Michael Garvin, PhD at the University of Alaska Fairbanks School of Fisheries: “I've applied for an NSF grant but the administrator was not even sure they would get funding. It took me three months to write a grant that may have zero chance of getting funded anyway. One post-doc fellowship I applied for had 900 applicants. It's abysmal. I'm now applying for positions outside the United States.” [Huffington Post, 8/16/13]

Savann Guthrie, her husband Alex and their three kids have all been part of Petersburg’s Head Start program, run by Tlingit-Haida Central Council, for years…Back at the Guthrie house, Savann is thinking about sequestration’s impacts. ‘Any time you’re cutting the money, who you’re really hurting are the people and the families and the kids who need it the most,’ she says. [Alaska Public Radio, 8/28/13]

"’Oh, most definitely’ we've felt the cuts, said Michael Jenkins, communications director of the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium. The group is closing the Bill Brady Healing Center that provides alcohol and drug treatment to Native Alaskans.” [Huffington Post, 4/2/13]


“‘These are, by far, the most serious cuts I've experienced,’ said Ms. Molloy, who has been involved for 40 years with Head Start, which is overseen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.” [Education Week, 5/14/13]

U.S. District Court Judge Raner Collins of Tuscon: “You have more delays in terms of cases getting to trial, getting processed through the system…You have people spending more time in detention. That costs more money.” [WKAR, 8/26/13]

“Karrin Taylor, executive vice president for Scottsdale-based commercial development firm DMB Associates, said the paradigm is shifting especially for small businesses with defense dollars becoming more and more competitive and contracts drying up. ‘Once they’re gone, it’s very difficult to re-create them,’ she said. ‘It’s not like the construction industry where we flip a light switch and it comes back quickly. They’re skilled, technical small businesses that take a long time to rebuild.’” [Politico, 4/25/13]


‘This is going to severely impact their daily lives because for 13 days they won't have a place to go,’ said Brenda Zedlitz, Washington County Head Start's program director. ‘We serve the working poor. Where are their children going to go when they are at work? Does this mean that they will leave their children with caregivers who might not be appropriate? Mostly, what does this mean to the wellbeing of that child?’” [Huffington Post, 3/21/13]

“‘For some of the families this will pull the rug from out beneath them and they may not recover from it,’ [Brenda Zedlitz, Washington County Head Start's program director] added. ‘Head Start is the safety net and without the safety net you fall into crisis.’” [Huffington Post, 3/21/13]


“‘We’ve experienced acquisition delays in the past that have impacted planned revenues within a period, but never of this magnitude,’ Chief Executive Officer [of Aeorvironment on cutting 400 jobs] Tim Conver said.” [Bloomberg, 4/29/13]

“When parents are away on the ship for nine months, they want to be reassured that their kids are being taken care of back home,” Boogaard tells me. “If we’re cutting like this, then they’re not being taken care of like they should.” [The Nation, 4/24/13]

Children's Hospital in Los Angeles lost $1 million from its NIH grant as part of sequestration this fiscal year. "That means figuring out how to keep the discoveries in children's cancer research moving forward and still close that million dollar gap in funding," said Brent Polk, the hospital’s Physician in Chief. [Southern California Public Radio, 5/30/13]

PHD candidate Meredith Chabrier is worried that the reduction in research dollars may push her out of the field she loves: brain science. Some of her professors UC Irvine have told her that after she finishes nearly a decade of education and training, there may not be enough work for her when she graduates. “That's really hard to grasp," Chabrier said. [Southern California Public Radio, 5/30/13]

[David Garrison, manager has worked for 42 years at Travis Air Force Base In California]: “Regarding morale, it is dismal. The civilians that work for me are tired of being perceived as the GSA (General Services Administration) guy in the hot tub, or the IRS employees lavishly spending money. That is the public perception of the federal worker. Now, they’re feeling even more unappreciated by everyone and abandoned by the government. The public at large seems to think that we deserve this . . . nothing could be farther from the truth. These are some of the most dedicated and hardest working people there are anywhere. They (we) have not had a pay raise in…3 years and now they’re cutting our pay by 20 percent. . . . Everything is going up but our wages.” [Washington Post, 7/8/13]


“‘At this point, everyone’s had enough time to digest that this is a new chapter in our story, and we just have to learn to work with it,’ said Noreen Landis-Tyson, chief executive of the Community Partnership for Childhood Development, which runs Head Start in El Paso County, Colo. ‘We have to see this as an opportunity. Otherwise I’d have to sit in the corner and cry.’” [New York Times, 5/6/13]

The layoff was ‘a direct result of sequestration. (The laboratory) decided to hold onto the money, which was funding the salaries of a large group of people for the rest of the fiscal year. We don't know if the cuts are temporary or permanent,’ ISS CEO Jay Jesse said Monday. ‘These are good and talented people, a mix of program managers, engineers and testing personnel.’” [Denver Post, 3/19/13]


“‘So if we're not able to work it out, we might have to reduce the hours of the day, close earlier...Our parents need it because they work,’ [Bob Arnold, president and CEO of Family Centers Head Start] said.”[Connecticut Post, 6/10/13]

“‘If my daughter were to be pulled out of the program, what am I going to do? I have to get my education and work,’ she said during a Wednesday morning meeting with other parents, Head Start staff and U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-3.” [New Haven Register, 5/29/13]

“[West Haven] Mayor John M. Picard, who also joined the discussion, said the government needs to find a better way to allocate resources or negotiate other changes. ‘It's the kids who suffer. It's not their decision. It's nothing they've done,’ he said.” [New Haven Register, 5/29/13]

“‘I just feel like it's helped me so much that it would be really wonderful if it could help more families, not less,’ said Jaime Colon, a [Head Start] parent.” [WTNH, 4/25/13]

Some parents in Connecticut were scrambling Wednesday night to find childcare after budget cuts abruptly took a toll on the Head Start program they rely on. ‘It's going to be pretty hard for me because I'm still in school and this change comes out of nowhere,’ said Rouree Newton of New Haven.” [WFSB, 7/24/13]

"We're starting to get a little bit worried. Things are slowing down and we really hope that the President's defense budget passes. A lot of families in this company's depending on it," said Jennifer Hanna, Enfield. [WTNH, 8/20/13]


“Deborah Thomas, vice chair of the Delaware Head Start Association, said that the cuts will have ‘an astronomical impact’ on families. ‘We’re just sitting here holding our breath as to what the government is going to do,’ she said.” [Delaware State News, 3/1/13]

“Meanwhile, [Doris Rizek, the state Head Start director for the Telamon Corporation] worried about what she would do if her budget is cut. ‘I’m hoping for better. Just setting a whole center — how can you justify doing that? How can you pick and choose among children?’ she said.” [Delaware State News, 3/1/13]


“‘The impact on their lives and those around them cannot be measured, but we know it will add stress to their daily lives as well as their family,’ Col. Scott DeThomas, commander of the 6th Air Mobility Wing and MacDill base commander, wrote in an emailed statement last month.” [Tampa Tribune, 7/7/13]

“‘What's not debatable is that sequestration has created a sense of uncertainty and instability in sectors of the Florida economy,’ [Senate President Don Gaetz], a Niceville Republican, said during a speech at the Capitol Tiger Bay Club meeting today.” [Tampa Bay Times, 3/8/13]

“‘It's frustrating. … If all of a sudden funding isn't there, you are left with people you can't support,’ [Dr. David S. Guzick, senior vice president for Health Affairs for the UF&Shands Health System] said.” [Gainesville Sun, 3/30/13]

“‘The biggest concern would be if we have a very active hurricane season and we have back-to-back storms or we have multiple storms hitting the state, they would simply not have the manpower to necessary to ensure they have the appropriate coverage in all their field offices to provide us with the most accurate and timely forecast,’ said Bryan Koon, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management.” [WCTV, 5/28/13]


“Terry Tolbert is the Deputy Director of the EOA’s Head Start here in Savannah. ‘Our funding was cut by 5.27%, which means we had to lay off 48 children. In addition we had to lay off about 18 staff members. Some were teachers, some were other support staff,’ says Tolbert.” [WJCL, 8/21/13]

“‘It means we can’t serve as many children and families as we would like to. We’ve had to cut staff, we’ve had to cut families, because if we cut a child that’s all inclusive of that entire family,’ says Alycia Brown, Education Coordinator of Head Start Savannah.” [WJCL, 8/21/13]

“‘The big cities have the possibility of helping,’ [Ramona Codling, the director of Head Start for Southwest Georgia Community Action Council in Moultrie] said. ‘But when you’re in a rural area, everybody’s hurting.’” [Bloomberg, 8/12/13]


“‘Given that, sequestration hasn't seemed to have any effect on the prosecution side of the equation,’ [First Assistant Federal Defender Alexander Silvert] said. ‘They're fully staffed and they keep bringing more cases. It's a tragedy and it's a travesty of justice, and quite frankly, the politicians are at fault for this.’” [AP, 8/29/13]


“‘It’s going to be devastating to the families and very hard to do,’ Idaho Head Start Association Executive Director Stan Burton said about sequester cuts.” [Idaho Press, 3/17/13]


“[Giuseppina Nucifora, Professor of Hematology/Oncology in the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine]: My lab has unfortunately lost the 20-years continuous NIH support for research on a disease that affects the blood cells of mostly older patients.” [Huffington Post, 8/16/13]


“‘We now have 294 students, which is a considerable drop from what we used to have,’ [Bloomington’s South Central Community Action Program] director Blakely Clements said. ‘We closed a couple classrooms, we lost all of those children slots and people associated with them. This just doesn’t affect the children but the families of those who worked with them.’” [Indianapolis Star, 8/20/13]

“‘It shows all the lost opportunities for young children,’ [Mary Goedde, CAPE (Community Action Program Of Evansville)’s director of education] said, ‘especially at such a crucial time. It really affects the low-income families of our community.’” [Evansville Courier and Press, 8/19/13]

“At a major conference in Denver, ‘We were discussing national (ecological) adaptive issues, and the feds weren’t there,’ [Jessica Hellmann, a Notre Dame biological sciences professor] said.” [South Bend Tribune, 8/9/13]

Sherri Summit, who has one kid in college and a 10-year-old at home, has been unemployed for nine months. She gets $368 a week in federal unemployment benefits and is two months' behind on her mortgage payment, she told the Evansville Courier Press in Indiana. ‘Where do you cut back when you've already cut back? Do you lose your home?’ she said. [MSN, 3/5/13]


“‘Essentially we are going to be furloughing babies and preschoolers from the classroom here in Davenport,’ said Roger Pavey, the executive director of Community Action of Eastern Iowa, which runs the Head Start programs” [WQAD, 3/20/13]


“‘It is like a slowly growing cancer,’ said Steven Warren, vice chancellor for research at University of Kansas. ‘It is going to do a lot of destruction over time. You are going to see people's careers end early on -- assistant professors, associate professors. They will never get that grant at that critical time and they're gone. You are going to see promising graduate students not be promising graduate students, and just leave. And it will play out over a period of many years.’” [Huffington Post, 7/10/13]


“‘It’s a huge hit,’ [Aubrey Nehring, the chief executive officer of Audubon Area Community Services] said. ‘We’ve had a number of parents who’ve had to find other childcare, or quit work or drop out of school.’” [Bloomberg, 8/12/13]


“‘I talked to a woman who just found a place. Her son was shot twice when he was 8 so she keeps her kids in the house all the time. But she finally found somewhere safe and was so excited,’ [Colette Tippy, lead organizer for Stand with Dignity] said. ‘She borrowed $1,000 from family and friends for the deposit and talked to her kids about playing in the yard and being able to go outside. She was devastated when she got the letter. These politicians are playing with people's lives.’” [New Orleans Time-Picayune, 3/29/13]

“‘We will continue to serve the families and children in our care despite these harmful cuts,’ [Jedidiah Jackson, director of Jefferson Community Action Programs] said ‘And I say harmful because every child (who) is missed or not served because of these federally mandated cuts prevents them from having the head start that this program is designed to create.’” [New Orleans Times-Picayune, 6/17/13]


“‘We have saved everything that we could, canceled vacations, cut services, combined services, changed the way we grocery shop, basically just pinched the penny wherever we could,’ [Chett Forbus, a Navy veteran who is now a DOD civilian in Maine] said. ‘We will survive because of proper planning. The overwhelming, scary part of this is the same elected officials have done nothing to prevent this from happening again.’” [Stars and Stripes, 7/12/13]

“But this week, the 40-year-old father from Rollinsford is being forced to launch a second career. From 6 a.m. until about 2:30 in the afternoon, Bourgeois will be helping to fix foreclosed homes, adding a full 40 hours of work onto his regular duties as a shipyard supply technician. Although it means more time away from home, Bourgeois said the extra work is necessary to continue supporting his family. ‘I had no choice,’ he said. … ‘If I had just lost the overtime, or just lost eight hours off my check, I probably could have dealt with it,’ he said, ‘but losing 16 hours off a paycheck, it’s just not realistic. It’s impossible.’” [Foster’s Daily Democrat, 7/13/13]

“‘We need sequestration to end. Telling hardworking Americans not to work is not going to save money. The work still has to be done. It will back up. Sequestration was never meant to be a logical budget cutting tool,’ [Paul O’Connor, president of the Metal Trades Council ] said. ‘Sequestration is a job cutter and it’s going to cost tax payers more in the long run, and if anybody doesn’t see that they’re not paying attention.’” [Bangor Daily News, 7/16/13]


“Pat O’Shea, University of Maryland vice president and chief research officer, said universities were already witnessing an across-the-board brain drain, with top researchers fleeing to more accommodating pastures ‘It is not just junior faculty, it is senior faculty,’ O'Shea said. ‘It is something that we never saw before.’” [Huffington Post, 7/10/13]

“‘I have never seen a year where there is going to be such a need for advocacy around NIH funding,’ [Dr. Daniel Ford, vice dean for clinical investigation at Johns Hopkins Medicine] said.” [Baltimore Sun, 8/16/13]

You’re eating away little by little at the infrastructure and effectiveness of government,” said Philip Joyce, a professor at the University of Maryland. [New York Times, 9/4/13]

“‘Even senior researchers are finding it more difficult,’ said Gerald Stacy, administrative director of Hopkins' Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, which manages the translational grant funds and programs there. ‘As our budget gets smaller, more people are saying, 'Can you help me?'’” [Baltimore Sun, 8/16/13]

“‘I struggle from day to day,’ [single mother Kelly Burford] said.” [Bloomberg, 8/12/13]

A U.S. preschool program for low-income families allowed single mother Kelly Burford to take a $7.25-an-hour job as a department store clerk in Maryland…That ended in June, when Bradyn’s school in Taneytown, seventy miles north of Washington, closed after losing $103,000 because of automatic government spending cuts. Without support from the federal Head Start program, Burford, 35, said she had to quit her job and has seen her son’s progress slip. “The teachers were really good -- he was learning a lot,”she said. “Now, he’s fallen back.” [Bloomberg, 8/12/13]

“‘Don't set us back,’ says Debra Mahone, who runs federal Title 1 programs for Prince George's Schools, don't ‘pull the rug out from under children who really need that support.’” [WUSA, 2/28/13]


“‘Everyone who was in the program [Community Teamwork Head Start], this was their only option,’ said [Bernadette Donovan], who’s looking for a job. ‘It was a big loss.’” [Bloomberg, 8/12/13]

“‘To get this cut to our program is very frustrating,’ [Janis Santos, a legend in early child care education and a Head Start pioneer] said, ‘and for the first time in my 40 years I don’t quite understand it. It is so challenging. How do you tell families, ‘I’m sorry, but we can’t take your child this year’? But we’re fighters, and all of the Head Starts in America, that’s what we do; we fight for poor children each day. We want them to have a good education and a good quality of life.’” [WBUR, 7/17/13]

She underwent multiple rounds of chemotherapy and radiation as well as experimental treatments. Farber said she can’t even imagine how much her treatment costs.“I have no idea,” she admitted. “I have good health insurance. But that’s the scary thing about sequestration — what if someone who is not as lucky as me, the same diagnosis as me, but relies on something government-funded, and they can’t get funding for their treatment? What do they do?” [WBUR, 7/17/13]


“‘We're not at the beginning of our budget year, so they are allowing us a one-time option to shorten our program year this year, and without that option, it would be just impossible for us to achieve that kind of cut,’ said Head Start Director for AMCAB, Marjorie Klein.” [WLUC, 4/3/13]

“‘We’re already check-to-check,’ explains 27-year old [Etim Obong, Jr., student at Focus Hope machinist training program, which is on an indefinite hold due to sequestration]. ‘If they take something like this away, it’s not gonna be good for our society at all.’” [Michigan Public Radio, 5/22/13]

“‘Due to sequestration, we took quite a hit on our youth funding,’ [Michigan Works! Director Deborah Groeneveld] said.” [Michigan Live, 6/19/13]

“With just Social Security and $122 a month in food stamps, Murray, a 66-year-old retired nurse, said there was nothing but bread and butter left in her refrigerator. ‘It’s not pleasant, it really isn’t — going hungry,’ she said. Just as bad, she said: ‘You miss seeing your friends.’” [Detroit Free Press, 5/28/13]

“‘I got stopped by a police officer last week — and this upset me so much — he found some of the residents Dumpster diving,’ [Elizabeth Lee Doles Manor in Clinton Township site supervisor Kathy Hernandez] said.” [Detroit Free Press, 5/28/13]

“That’s where we’re at. They’re going to starve our most vulnerable people. It’s harsh, yes. Sequestration is harsh.” Bob Brown, Senior Alliance Director. [Detroit Free Press, 5/28/13]


“‘At the end of the day, we're going to lose children,’ said Rico Alexander, the Director of Head Start in Hennepin County. ‘We're talking about the poorest children in the state of Minnesota,’ said Alexander.” [KSTP, 8/21/13]


“Dr. Barbara Coatney is the Executive Director of the Gulf Coast Community Action Agency which oversees eight Head Start centers in south Mississippi. She admits she's worried about the cuts. ‘Presently we are serving 1,368 children, and as of next year we will have less than that. We will have 1,268. We will have to let parents know that we can put you on a waiting list, but we just don't have the space.’” [WLOX, 6/13/13]

Dr. Barbara Coatney, Executive Director of the Gulf Coast Community Action Agency: “It seems that for me, in this country that we should be able to take care of our most fragile resource, and that is our children. And that's not happening with sequestration.” [WLOX, 6/13/13]


“‘Maybe having to go through this pain will let us send a message to legislators down the line, ‘You know, you have to find something else that doesn’t do this much damage,’’ said Carl Rosenkranz, the longtime executive director of the Ozarks Area Community Action Corporation in southwest Missouri, which is cutting 185 slots from Head Start and 14 from Early Start, a separate program for infants. ‘The sequester cuts are real.’” [New York Times, 5/6/13]

“‘When members of Congress were directly affected by the problems the Sequestration caused to airline travel, they found a solution,’ [Penny Miles, NMCAA Executive Director] said. ‘If we value our children, we should be able to find a way to help them when they need it the most.’” [NeMo News, 5/16/13]

“‘It’s incredibly painful, it’s incredibly hard and I’m incredibly sad,’ said Kimberly Shinn-Brown, director of the OACAC Head Start.” [Springfield News-Leader, 4/26/13]


“‘The National Head Start Association is trying to get it reversed, but we have to go ahead with the cuts,’ [Head Start Director Peggy Rayome] said. ‘We heard some time ago the cuts may come, but it’s like everyone thought Congress would come together and we wouldn’t have to make these. I think that’s what bothers me the most. We sort of heard this was coming, but no one believed it would come to this.’” [The Western News, 5/15/13]


“‘This is the worst that I've seen it, and I've been in Head Start for 24 years,’ [Deb Ross, executive director of the Head Start Child and Family Development Program] said.” [Grand Island Independent, 5/4/13]


“Diane Forsman is a single working mother of a 5-year-old who has depended on the program's help. ‘In my case, I'm not getting any other assistance except Head Start, so it would mean that I would have to go on food stamps,’ said Diane.” [KTNV, 3/22/13]

New Hampshire

“‘I’ve never seen a cut like this,’ said Jeanne Agri, child development director for Southern New Hampshire Services. ‘It’s really hard. It’s very, very difficult.’” [Nashua Telegraph, 5/5/13]

“‘I just hope that people realize that the sequestration is being felt on the backs of the families, and to me, that is a really sad statement,’ [Jeanne Agri, child development director for Southern New Hampshire Services] said. ‘These are silent people. They need us to advocate for them. It’s just really sad.’” [Nashua Telegraph, 5/5/13]

New Jersey

“For Sharon MacGregor, a graphic designer and medical education worker in Paterson, New Jersey, the sequester is terrifying indeed. MacGregor was laid off last July when her company went belly-up, and she is still looking for work. She is one of the 4.3 million* Americans who are ‘long-term unemployed…’ ‘I support myself. That’s $500 less I’ll have a month,’ she told The Nation. ‘Unemployment was already a significant cut—like 50 percent of my old salary. So now I’m going down even more, to about 40 percent of my old salary.’” [The Nation, 7/4/13]

“‘If our own firefighters needed help they wouldn’t be there to back them up,’ [John Eisenbarger, furloughed firefighter] said.” [NBC Philadelphia, 7/8/13]

New Mexico

“Lorraine Pepin and her family have been preparing for the cuts for a few months, stocking up on frozen foods, non-perishables and school supplies for the kids. But ‘making our regular monthly payments are going to cut us to virtually paycheck to paycheck with everything budgeted in,’ she said. … Rebecca Duque's husband works at White Sands. She estimates they'll lose about $300 a paycheck. ‘It will be hard because we have three kids, and I don't currently work because of day-care costs for three kids,’ Duque wrote on the Sun-News Facebook page.” [Las Cruces Sun-News, 7/8/13]

New York

“‘It impacts my civilian employees harder than it impacts the soldiers and the family members, because for us, it's an inconvenience. For them, it's 20 percent of their pay,’ [Colonel Gary Rosenberg, Fort Drum's garrison commander] said.” [North Country Public Radio, 7/9/13]

“‘When we got the news, it was hard for me as an advocate,’ [Daniela Perez, who has worked for 10 years as a family advocate at the Riverhead center] said. ‘Telling parents we’re going to close early and they’ll need to find help with their kids was hard. It’s affecting me as a worker and a mom because my daughter is out of school earlier. I have to start thinking about where she can go and getting another job until October.’” [River Head News-Review, 6/16/13]

“‘People don’t realize the need for Head Start programs,’ [Carol Burnett, a community outreach recruitment coordinator for Long Island Head Start] said. ‘These cuts will be particularly catastrophic.’” [River Head News-Review, 6/16/13]

“‘We had to let people know that we’ve cut so far past the fat and so far past the muscle that we’re into the bone,’ Chief Judge Loretta Preska of the U.S. District Court in Manhattan said Thursday.” [Washington Post, 8/15/13]

North Carolina

“‘We lost approximately 5% of our budget, and we decided the easiest thing for us to do was to eliminate 30 students,’ said Dr. Kay Gresham of Onslow County Schools. Gresham is the executive director of Head Start in Onslow County.” [WNCT, 7/30/13]

“‘It's heartbreaking to hear that these children and their families that are trying to work and go to school won't have these support services,’ [Donna Barnette, Cumberland County Head Start director] said.” [WRAL, 2/28/13]

North Dakota

“‘I don't think anybody can stand a twenty percent pay cut. Granted our North Dakota economy is great but from a family perspective twenty percent is a lot of money. So that is priority number one. Priority number two, not far behind is readiness. And obviously were concerned that our readiness is going to degrade,’ says Col. Dave Thiele/Director of Personnel ND National Guard.” [WDAY, 7/6/13]


“[Dorothy M. Supp, Ph.D., Associate Investigator at the Shriners Hospitals for Children at Cincinnati Burns Hospital] My research has been greatly impacted by NIH budget cuts…New rules at NIH only permit you to submit a grant application two times: one original submission, and if not funded, one revised submission... My last application was scored 19th percentile... I was told the cut-off was 15% this year due to sequestration and the continuing resolution. This was a revised application so this project can no longer be submitted to NIH for funding...it's dead in the water. I have submitted over a dozen grant applications in the last two years alone, with no success. I got my PhD in 1994 and should be at the peak of my career. Instead I am constantly writing grant after grant, trying to keep myself and my two research assistants employed. Discouraging doesn't begin to describe the current climate. [Huffington Post, 8/16/13]

“The SEI estimates only half of Summit County children experience preschool before entering kindergarten. The local Head Start program that served more than 1,500 students last year is being forced to cut 93 slots because of federal ‘sequestration’ cuts. ‘It’s a problem,’ said Wimer. ‘It sickens me that we are not able to provide these opportunities for children to start school on equal footing. It sickens me when I see that.’” [Akron Beacon Journal, 8/13/13]


“‘There's no way that I can make up that income,’ MacDonald said, adding that he was already working part-time at two other jobs. ‘I really, really can't afford it. It's just stressful.’” [WSOK, 7/7/13]


“‘In a time when we could have had more cash in the economy by having the government be a spender, be a customer to the economy, we didn’t do that. In fact, we took more money out of the economy. For that reason, there’s just less job opportunities for everybody entering the job market after college,’ [Ben Rhiger, a 28-year-old warehouse worker in Portland, Ore] said. ‘It just decreased any opportunity of getting more work experience, learning a trade or skill on the job, while being able to support ourselves.’” [NBC News, 7/28/13]

“‘At least two classrooms would be cut–that’s at least 36 families that would not be able to provide the support, and that’s just in one county,’ said Head Start teacher Kate Ascetta.” [KEZI, 3/15/13]


“‘We did not make any staff cuts or drop any kids last (fiscal) year but we had to cut our enrollment by 100 for this year,’ said Barry Colgan, fiscal officer for Delaware County Intermediate Unit Head Start programs. ‘We have not heard anything about whether that funding will be restored.’” [Delaware County Times, 8/19/13]

“‘This is a dark day for the Sixth Amendment,’ [Leigh M. Skipper, the chief federal defender in Philadelphia] wrote.” [Philadelphia Inquirer, 4/22/13]

“‘We think this is devastating,’ said Joan Benso, president and CEO of Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children. ‘The real challenge is that children don't get to redo their preschool years when the economy recovers.’” [Lehigh Valley Express-Times, 5/10/13]

Rhode Island

“‘It’s been devastating,’ said Lynda Dickinson, CEO of CHILD Inc., which serves children in the West Bay area. Her agency enrolled 417 children before the federal cuts. This fall, it will eliminate 48 seats.” [Providence Journal, 8/20/13]

“‘We know that school readiness depends on our lowest-income children having access to high-quality preschool experiences,’ said Elizabeth Burke Bryant, Kids Count’s executive director. ‘We don’t need to be turning back the clock.’” [Providence Journal, 8/20/13]

“Comprehensive Community Action Program in Cranston closed three weeks early and will open three weeks later. It has already eliminated transportation and cut 60 slots. ‘This is the first time we have cut kids and reduced hours,’ said Joanne McGunagle, the agency’s executive director.” [Providence Journal, 8/20/13]

“‘This isn’t how anyone balances a budget. You don’t slash 5 percent across the board,’ said David Caprio, director of Childen’s Friend & Service in Providence. ‘These are low-income families. They have no place else to go.’” [Providence Journal, 8/20/13]

“‘That’s what devastates me,’ said Mary Varr, executive director of Woonsocket Head Start, which has a waiting list of 120 children. ‘People aren’t looking at the big picture.’” [Providence Journal, 8/20/13]

South Carolina

“[On turning cancer patients away due to sequestration] ‘We don’t sugar-coat things, we’re cancer doctors,’ Charles Holladay, a doctor at the [Charleston Cancer Center], said. ‘We tell them that if we don’t go this course, it’s just a matter of time before we go out of business.’” [Washington Post, 4/3/13]

“‘They have not heard the cry from the poor who are really hurting,’ OCAB Community Action Agency, Inc. Executive Director Calvin Wright said in reference to the approximately $273,000 the agency will not see this year for its Head Start and Early Head Start programs.” [Orangeburg Times And Democrat, 6/2/13]

“‘It puts a burden back on the local government,’ [Orangeburg County Administrator Harold Young] said. ‘The sequester is affecting things that are socially driven.’” [Orangeburg Times And Democrat, 6/2/13]

[Joanna Baker, DOD Employee of 45 years in Fort Jackson, SC]: “This [has] a profound effect . . . With both my husband and myself furloughed this affects how we will spend . . . I believe morale for civilian employees is at the lowest level possible. . . . Civilian morale will NEVER be the same as it has in the past, and it will get worse and worse as the furloughs progress. . . . We have lost many outstanding civilians . . . because of the furloughs and we will be losing more. In the future if they try to recruit professionals, what professional in the right mind would come to work for an organization who will do this to their most valuable assets?” [Washington Post, 7/8/13]

South Dakota

“‘Here we are protecting our country, and I have told my congressman, It feels like we are being punished for no reason,’ [Master Sgt. Bill Nelson] said.” [Argus Leader, 8/1/13]


“‘We cut transportation so we wouldn't have to reduce our service day. We're just really having to make tough decisions and prioritize, and all our bus drivers and bus monitors are going to be laid off,’ [Clinch-Powell Head Start Director Debbie Thomas] said.” [WATE, 3/6/13]

“‘If Congress continues to allow the sequestration to take place every year for the next three or four years and the discretionary funding for R & D gets dramatically cut 10 percent every year now for another four, five years, then it's gonna be a tougher world for us,’ [University of Tennessee Vice Chancellor for Research and Engagement Taylor Eighmy] said.” [The Daily Beacon, 4/1/13]


Jamie Pettis, disabled army veteran and civilian employee at the Corpus Christie Army Depot: “I currently cannot keep up with the car payments . . . I have cut off my cable and Internet services . . . so I can start saving now before furlough hits my paycheck. I am re-evaluating my grocery bill to buy just enough to eat week by week….Due to furloughs, the depot has lost several great journeyman mechanics to the oil fields. The experience loss will slow down production and increase quality defects due to a less experienced workforce. . . . Currently, morale is tremendously low.” [Washington Post, 7/8/13]

“‘It is a huge hardship for me and for a lot of other people,’ [Cecilia Bejarano, a civilian nurse at Beaumont] said. ‘It's going to have a huge effect on a lot of people.’” [El Paso Times, 7/8/13]


Robert E. Marc, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Utah School of Medicine: “Moreover the sequester's cost is tremendously understated as no one is counting the destroyed investments. I've spent over $25,000 developing a colony of animals who have a progressive age dependent blindness. Because of the sequester we've killed them before we could finish the treatment study. We saved about $4000 from this year's budget. We thus wasted 5x more money than the sequester saved. When and if Congress ever does anything again, it will be years before we get our new blindness treatment study back on line. If it doesn't get better soon, I'll retire early and then 15 people will be unemployed.” [Huffington Post, 8/16/13]

Robert E. Marc, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Utah School of Medicine: “NIH funding is a huge part of the economies of many states, especially Utah. So the sequester cuts grocery money, house payments etc. In a smoke and mirrors move, the federal deficit is just distributed into small local economies who can do nothing about it. The sequester is like balancing your family budget by stealing from neighbors.” [Huffington Post, 8/16/13]

“‘Absolutely we're feeling the effects of it,’ said Cathy Hoskins, executive director of the Salt Lake Community Action Program, which just closed a food pantry in Murray, Utah. ‘And our employees are trying to absorb the biggest parts of the cuts by taking furloughs and having the agency contribution to their retirement plan suspended.’” [Huffington Post, 4/2/13]


These cuts are devastating for kids and families and communities,” [Paul Behrman, director of the Champlain Valley Head Start and chair of the Vermont Head Start Association] said. “In many cases, this is the program that is serving some of those most vulnerable kids and families, providing some of those most critical services.” [Vermont Digger, 7/2/13]

“‘Washington made it clear that these cuts were mandatory,’ said [Early Education Services Executive Director Debra Gass]. ‘They also said we could not compromise quality. We had to eliminate slots. That was the only way to make up the loss in funding.’” [Brattleboro Reformer, 5/18/13]

“‘We're facing a 5 percent cut across the board,’ Gass told the School Board. ‘These are the most dramatic and draconian cuts I have seen in 37 years of working with the Head Start program.’” [Brattleboro Reformer, 3/8/13]


Jeremy B. Tuttle, Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Virginia School of Medicine: “My work has been supported continuously by NIH, NSF, various foundations and other sources, but primarily NIH. I have decided to shut my lab down by the end of this year and resign…That is the result of sequestration combined with stagnant support for some time - a hole in the time line of scientific progress.” [Huffington Post, 8/16/13]

“One thing is clear: Though the cuts officially took effect in March, the pain from most of the Title I cuts has only just begun, as the reductions were incorporated into 2013-14 school budget. ‘Anyone who thinks it’s not having an adverse impact needs to spend more time in our school system,’ say Kizner, the Harrisonburg superintendent. [MSNBC, 9/2/13]

“‘If I'm not funded in the next six months, I will be forced to abandon most of my research project,’ [Yuntao Wu of George Mason University] said. ‘Some of these projects have been invested in for years.’ Recently, he's begun thinking about leaving the country for greener pastures. ‘I am starting to set up collaboration with Chinese researchers because the funding here dried up. This will permit me to at least keep some of my project alive,’ he said. ‘It has been very frustrating for me. I am in the middle of my career and the most productive time of my life.’” [Huffington Post, 8/14/13]


“[Jennifer Green, works for Madigan Army Medical Center on Joint Base Lewis-McChord ] was ‘really upset and frustrated’ after hearing she’d be facing the furlough. She and her co-workers were given 30 days’ notice, she said, which meant she had three paychecks’ time to figure out a plan moving forward. ‘They kept telling us, ‘Don’t worry about it,’’ she said. ‘But 30 days is not a lot of notice.’” [Seattle Times, 8/9/13]

“[Cameron Ames, an Air Reserve technician at Lewis-McChord] and his colleagues are facing reduced income because of the sequester, which, he said, has led many to ask themselves, ‘Do we make the house payment or the car payment?’” [Seattle Times, 8/9/13]

West Virginia

“‘You write your grants and you know you're hoping to hear something but right now with all the uncertainty with what's going on, a lot of times we don't get the answers as quickly as we would anticipate,’ [Karen Williams, Head Start director for Kanawha County] said. ‘It's been kind of nerve-wracking.’” [Charleston Daily Mail, 5/28/13]


“‘It seems so unreasonable, so avoidable,’ said [La Crosse County Aging Unit Director Noreen Holmes]. ‘We're going to take food away from elderly people? I think it's just crazy.’” [WKBT, 4/30/13]

“After the sequestration cuts took effect March 1, [Ruth Rosenow, director of the Chippewa County Housing Authority] was notified that the reimbursement rate would be 68 percent this year. ‘We can’t operate at 68 percent,’ she said. ‘There comes a point where you just can’t continue.’” [Chippewa Herald, 5/19/13]

“‘We basically did try everything we can to avoid cuts to children and families, but with the size of the cuts ... it’s still necessary to cut direct services,’ [Jen Bailey, child health and development director for the Dane County Parent Council] said.” [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 5/6/13]


My heart just hurts deeply for the loss of the children we don’t have now,’ [Laramie County Head Start Director Bonnie Riedel] added.” [Casper Star Tribune, 9/3/13]