Government Shutdown Resources

Federal Government Shutdown Resources: US Capitol

The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington is closely monitoring the needs and concerns of our community members as the federal government shutdown continues. We know that thousands of our friends, families, and neighbors in the DMV region are facing an unsettling period of stress, anxiety and economic instability.

The Jewish Federation and our partners are committed to helping all members of our community access necessary support and resources during this time. For those seeking assistance or stress relief, we have compiled a list of available resources and services that will be updated as local needs emerge and evolve.

Jewish Communal Resources

  • The Hebrew Free Loan Association of Greater Washington is offering quick turnaround emergency loans of up to $2,000 specifically for furloughed Federal employees. The application can be accessed through the Hebrew Free Loan Society emergency loan page.
  • JSSA, the Jewish Social Service Agency, provides counseling for adults, families and adolescents in Maryland and Northern Virginia. For services, call 301-816-2633.
  • JSSA is running a free drop-in support and resource group for furloughed government workers. Participants will receive support, techniques on how to reduce stress, manage strong emotions and resources to help you get through this tough time. Sessions start Wednesday, January 30 from 10:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. at their Fallsgrove office. No RSVP is required. Questions? Call 301-838-4200.
  • Looking to donate your time? Explore Federation’s Jconnect listing of ongoing volunteer opportunities.
  • 6th & I is providing free Shabbat meals after services this Friday to furloughed federal employees affected by the government shutdown.
  • Furloughed employees who are not members can stop by Bender JCC between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. with a government ID and pick-up a guest pass each day the government is shut down.
  • Federal employees are invited to Bender JCC’s Bagel Bar open, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. (while supplies last). Sponsored by Moti’s Market.
  • Furloughed government employees who need financial assistance for their upcoming Bender ECC Preschool or Camp JCC tuition payments can contact them to set up payment deferral. If you need financial assistance for your Bender JCC membership dues, please contact their membership desk.

If you have further questions, contact the Federation team at [email protected] or Federation’s Jconnect at 888-246-1818.

Additional Resources

  • Check with the Office of Personnel Management for information on pay, unemployment insurance, and leave during a shutdown furlough.
  • Contact your elected representatives and voice your opinion about the shutdown.
  • Stay up to date with the CNN shutdown tracker.
  • Contact your landlord, mortgage holder or utility company directly to ask for a payment extension.
  • 211 is a service of each jurisdiction to guide residents to find Health and Human Services assistance in their area. Call 211 from any landline and the call will go directly to the local jurisdiction. From other phones call 1-800-492-0618 in Maryland, 1-800-230-6977 in Virginia and 202-463-6211 in DC.
  • Washington DC Financial Resources is a clearinghouse of assistance for rent, utilities and food. It has listings for Washington DC, surrounding Maryland counties and Northern Virginia.
  • Need Help Paying Bills lists assistance programs for rent, utilities, mortgage payment, debt, and medical bills.
  • Federal employees receive free admission to the Newseum.
  • Some DC theaters are offering discounts to furloughed government employees. Discounts are being offered by Arena Stage, Creative Cauldron, NextStop Theater, Olney Theater Company, Signature Theater, Studio Theatre, and Washington Improv Theater.
  • Those with a Federal Employee ID can receive some free or discounted food and drinks. This DCist article list offers from José Andrés, Carmine’s, Baked by Yael, Taco Bamba, ZBurger, Capitol Lounge, Little Havana, The Queen Vic, Commissary, Breadfurst, The Brighton, Brookland’s Finest, DC Brau, Catch 22, Capitol Hill Books, DC Reynolds, Equinox,  National Building Museum, Artechouse, and the Woodrow Wilson House. (Options are not guaranteed to be kosher.)
  • The local NBC affiliate, NBC4, has gathered shutdown resources for those living in the DC area.
  • Washington DC has set up a page with resources for city residents. The City Paper has a listing of ways you can help local businesses as well as assistance available in DC.
  • Fairfax County has set up a page with resources for county residents.
  • Arlington County has set up a page with news alerts about assistance for county residents.
  • Montgomery County has set up a page with resources for county residents.
  • The City of Rockville has set up a page with resources for city residents.
  • Prince George’s County has set up a page with resources for county residents.
  • Ann Arundel County has set up a page with resources for county residents.
  • Howard County has set up a page with resources for county residents.
  • If your budget has taken a hit, check out these family-friendly government shutdown freebies for federal workers.
  • My Fed Benefits has set up a state-by-state map of assistance programs, including nation-wide assistance.
  • If you are suffering due to the current government shutdown, FEEA has small grants available to furloughed/excepted feds earning $55,000/year or less. A separate program is available for active feds who are NARFE members.
  • has an unemployment guide and expainer.