OIF Vet Victim of Government Shutdown - Needs Help With Rent

by Richard
(Belding, Michigan, Ionia)

I'm an OIF veteran that has fallen victim to the government shutdown, and now I'm behind on rent.

My situation probably isn't very unique. I probably won't be the last one this will happen to, either.

The problem first arose the beginning of September, about 3 days before rent was due. I got a nasty infection in a tooth that I already had worked on once while I was in the service. While I did have dental insurance through my employer, it wasn't very good. So, I had to fork over more than 3/4 of my rent money for an emergency root canal and crown.

Then, as I was starting to get caught back up to get September's rent paid off, the "Government Shutdown" caused my company to lay 8 people off because 85% of our work load is government contracted.

So the money I had saved up for rent had to go to pay for gas and food. My unemployment still hasn't kicked in, and now I'm behind on October's rent as well.

I was lucky enough to find another job already. Being a CNC Programmer has its perks, but I won't see my first check for a couple more weeks and I have about $32 left to my name.

So I'm reaching out to anyone that can lend a hand! I could even pay the money back once I'm back on my feet.

Richard, thank you for your service. I'm sorry to hear of the difficulties you've been having.

It infuriates me that the Obama Administration and the Democrats in Congress, playing partisan politics and refusing to negotiate, would stoop so low as to deliberately cause these kinds of financial problems for working Americans, who are already struggling due to the worst recession since the Great Depression.

But getting sidetracked with a political discussion won't help you at this point. I just hope that all Americans remember how little the Congress cares about their plight at voting time next fall.

Talk to your Landlord

First, have you discussed the problem with your landlord? Perhaps he/she would be more understanding and caring than Congress, since it isn't totally your fault. If you expect to be able to catch up your rent (at least in part) when you get your unemployment check or your first paycheck, the landlord may be willing to wait, and give you the opportunity to gradually dig yourself out of the hole by paying a little extra each month.

Check Church Food Pantries

Alternately, you might try to find some assistance with food (and maybe rent) from one of your local churches. Many churches operate local food banks for just such situations, and may be able to provide you with food so that you can use your cash to pay rent.

You don't necessarily have to be a member of the church to get assistance. Just call the church office at some churches near you and ask if they maintain a food pantry, and what you need to do to get assistance. If they don't have a food pantry, ask if they know where you might get some help. They will usually know what resources are available in the local area.

Then, when you do get back on your feet, remember to make a donation(s) so they can help someone else.

VFW Unmet Needs Program

VFW operates an Unmet Needs program for OIF/OEF veterans that might be able to help with rent. Check here to see if you qualify. Their criteria doesn't really address the government shutdown situation, so you may need to call someone to ask if you qualify.

National Resource Directory

You might also check the National Resource Directory
for some other veterans organizations that might be able to help.

Readers, do you know of other organizations that might be able to help Richard? Click below to post a comment.

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