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Government shutdown: What happens to SoCal after 1 week, 1 month, 2 months



As the Congressional standoff over spending continues, local problems mount. Marie Christy and Nichel Rousseau joined Organizing for Action to protest outside the Federal Building on the second day of the government shutdown.
As the Congressional standoff over spending continues, local problems mount. Marie Christy and Nichel Rousseau joined Organizing for Action to protest outside the Federal Building on the second day of the government shutdown.
Ken Scarboro/KPCC

As time passes, the government shutdown has the potential to harm increasing numbers of people. Among the most vulnerable: those who rely on federally funded programs for safety, health care and food in Southern California.  

When news of the shutdown first broke, many regional agencies reported little, if any immediate impact.  But with employees furloughed and funding sources frozen, the problems keep building.  Here's a timeline snapshot of a few programs bracing for impact.

Immediately following shutdown

"It's just another set of eyes that aren't out there," Gonzales said. 

As a result, there will be a backlog of claims the longer the shutdown continues, said J.P. Tremblay, deputy secretary for the state's VA. Under normal circumstances, he added, claims can take three months to two years to process.

If the shutdown were to last for more than a month, that would add a backlog of 9,000 to 10,000 claims, Tremblay said.

One week after shutdown

One month after shutdown

Palmer said the state's school lunch program only has enough money to provide service that's uninterrupted through the month of October.

Two months after shutdown

"If we can't get a resolution, we'll have to close, we'll have no more money. It would be devastating, life-threatening," said Laurie True, executive director of the California WIC Association, an advocacy group for WIC. "This is a very vulnerable population."

True said the state has 1.5 million people that participate in the program and about one-third of the caseload is in L.A. County. True said very low-income women who work jobs such as cleaning rooms or as agricultural workers rely on the supplemental food package worth $62 a month. The food includes food like milk, cheese, infant formula and cereal, True said.

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