While Americans are torn for their support for or against a “border wall” and all that it entails, most Americans feel bad for the nearly 800,00 federal employees on furlough or working without pay. The question is, what can we do to help during the Government Shutdown? Federal employees are not allowed to accept cash or gifts, at any level. But apparently, retail-related discounts and special offers are allowed.

No matter where you are in the USA reading this blog, take note of this. If you run a small business and you can help these fellow Americans out in their time of need, it will be appreciated and remembered by them. You are not taking sides during the Government Shutdown. You are siding with fellow Americans.

As an example, this is what is being done by local merchants in my community of Salem Ma. I am copying this list from a blog post by Destination Salem. 

The following discounts are available to federal employees during the Government Shutdown:

Coffee Time Bake Shop
Coffee Time Bake Shop will be offering free breakfast to all federal employees and immediate family members that come into the Shop on Thursday mornings until noon. This offer is good until the Government Shutdown is over. The federal employee must have a valid Federal Employee Identification.
96 Bridge Street | CoffeeTimeBakeShop.net

Flying Saucer Pizza Company
Flying Saucer would like to offer 15% off to federal employees with proof of employment during the Government Shutdown. *Discount cannot apply to alcohol.
118 Washington Street | FlyingSaucerPizzaCompany.com

The House of the Seven Gables
The House of the Seven Gables will offer our services as a local visitor center AND will be offering free admission to federal employees with proof of employment upon re-opening after preservation maintenance on January 18. Open daily 10:00 am-5:00 pm. Closed January 1-17 for preservation maintenance.
115 Derby Street | 7Gables.org

Peabody Essex Museum
Complimentary admission for National Park Service and other federal employees. (Salem residents always receive complimentary admission and Salem workers receive complimentary admission on weekdays. NPS and other federal employees may visit the museum with complimentary admission any day during the shutdown.)
161 Essex Street | PEM.org

Rockafellas would like to give back to federal employees* and their families who are affected by the Government Shutdown. Every Tuesday until the Government Shutdown is over, we would like to invite you and your family to come and enjoy lunch or dinner. We will offer a select menu (alcohol and some items excluded) during this time for you and your family to relax and not worry about the bill. Rockafellas understands the financial burden that the Government Shutdown has put on families and we hope this gesture will allow you and your family to enjoy a night out on us. *Federal ID must be present.
231 Essex Street | RockafellasofSalem.com

Salem Witch Museum
Complimentary admission for federal employees and their families during the Government Shutdown. The museum is open daily (closed January 14-18 for maintenance).
19 1/2 Washington Sq. N.| SalemWitchMuseum.com

Wicked Good Books
Wicked Good Books is offering federal employees a 25% discount with a government ID. Good for all regularly priced in-store merchandise. Let’s make America read again!
215 Essex Street| WickedGoodBookstore.com

The Witch House
Complimentary admission for federal employees and 20% off in the gift shop.
310 1/2 Essex Street | TheWitchHouse.org

Any other businesses in Salem or on the North Shore, feel free to pass on your “show of support” for these federal employees during the Government Shutdown and I will update on social media.