From MOAA’s President: Help Protect ALL Servicemembers’ Pay During a Shutdown

From MOAA’s President: Help Protect ALL Servicemembers’ Pay During a Shutdown

The specter of a government shutdown has gone from a possibility to what some members of Congress and analysts are dubbing “very likely” and “all but certain.”   


Members of all eight of our nation’s services continue to work when the government shuts down, and all those in uniform deserve to be paid for their service. This has long been one of MOAA’s top legislative priorities 


Members of the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Space Force are not guaranteed to be paid during a funding lapse, a fact opponents of a shutdown have raised this week. But it’s rare for those in uniform under DoD to go unpaid. This is not the case for hardworking servicemembers and families of the Coast Guard, however, as well as members of the U.S. Public Health Service and NOAA.   


Like their DoD comrades, their mission can’t and won’t stop because of the shutdown. However, their paychecks will: In the last partial shutdown (35 days, 2018-2019), most members of the Coast Guard missed a paycheck and some USPHS and NOAA personnel went the entire period without pay. 


MOAA, along with fellow members of the 5.5-million strong Military Coalition, is pushing aggressively for a legislative solution to this unjust policy, and we need your help to send a message loud and clear to our elected leaders on Capitol Hill.   


Please utilize MOAA's Legislative Action Center, where you can easily send pre-written letters to your members of Congress supporting H.R. 2693, the Pay Our Coast Guard Parity Act of 2023, and expressing the critical need to include USPHS and NOAA uniformed servicemembers.    


[CONTACT CONGRESS NOW: Support the Pay Our Coast Guard Parity Act]  


By doing so, you will join the cause to keep ALL uniformed servicemembers paid during a shutdown. Our Legislative Action Center is open to anyone – all ranks, all services, family members, and friends – so please share the link with your networks.   


Lapses in compensation to essential services stymie the ability to grow, equip, and maintain the force necessary to meet national security needs and jeopardize retention, recruitment, and the readiness of our all-volunteer uniformed services. As such, continuation of pay is fundamental to stabilizing the force’s contribution to national security.   


To all those serving today: Thank you for your essential service to our nation. We are working hard to reduce the strife you face in these uncertain times. And to our retirees, veterans, families, and survivors: Thank you for your service and for your continued support to fulfill our mission. Your voice as a constituent is powerful, and your grassroots advocacy can directly help servicemembers and their families.  


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About the Author

Lt. Gen. Brian T. Kelly, USAF (Ret)
Lt. Gen. Brian T. Kelly, USAF (Ret)

Lt. Gen. Brian T. Kelly, USAF (Ret), is MOAA's president and CEO. He retired from the Air Force in 2022 after more than three decades of service.