Nashville's federal workers dealing with government shutdown

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Posted at 10:18 AM, Dec 22, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — With a partial government shutdown underway, Federal workers in Middle Tennessee are left trying to figure out what wto do.

"We try to keep going and remain positive," Lauren Cromer said. Cromer is the supervisor for the South Nashville WIC Nutritional Center. The center helps families with WIC benefits, a federal program that uses grant money to help pregnant women and families with infants or children under the age of five buy healthy, nutritional foods.

For Cromer, this time of years is already one of the busiest.

"The other day we had one of our busiest days...everybody trying to get their benefits before the holidays," she said.

On top of her normal role, she was figuring out what a government shutdown would mean for the center, and for the thousands of WIC recipients in Nashville.

Cromer said in Tennessee there is enough money to keep WIC operating for at least another month. If the government is still shut down on Jan. 24, she's expecting to learn more about the options going forward.

"Things that other states have had to have done are maybe a priority list or something like that, to where we may not fund fully, or some people that haven't been approved may not get approved for the program," Cromer said. If there is still enough money in the program, business will be able to continue as usual.

If benefits are cut, Cromer said healthy food could be out of reach for many eligible women and young kids in need across the mid-state. But for now, Cromer is urging WIC users not to panic.

"Come in, use your benefits don't be afraid to get your WIC card loaded or get your vouchers," She said. "Just use the program as it's designed and hopefully there will be no impact to them in the long run."

Click here for more information on the government shutdown's impact.