Speed Reads

gee thanks

Government recommends furloughed employees do work for their landlords in exchange for rent

The federal government is recommending that employees who have been furloughed as part of the ongoing shutdown simply perform chores for their landlord in exchange for rent.

That's the actual advice straight from the Office of Personnel Management, a government agency that oversees federal employees, which on Thursday tweeted a series of "sample letters" for furloughed employees to make use of. One of them is addressed to the employee's landlord, which says, in part, "I would like to discuss with you the possibility of trading my services to perform maintenance (e.g. painting, carpentry work) in exchange for partial rent payments."

To make matters worse, when the agency tweeted out a link to these forms, it also recommended employees "consult with your personal attorney," assuming furloughed workers who are struggling to pay their rent would have a personal attorney on hand.

More than 800,000 federal employees are furloughed, CBS News reports, as part of a government shutdown that still has no end in sight. Brendan Morrow

Update Dec. 29: The file linked for download in the Office of Personnel Management tweet has been updated and no longer includes the landlord letter containing the chore barter idea.