SPRING BRANCH, Texas — As the government shutdown marches on, the effects of what it can do to everyday people is starting to get more in your face.
Taci Palmer can attest to that. Palmer has a nice federal job in Austin. To get to it, she drives more than one hour from her home in Spring Branch, Texas (about 15 minutes north of San Antonio). It’s worth it for the pay and benefits, she says.
Those benefits came in handy as she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer last year. However, those benefits can only cover so much in regards to medical bills and treatments.
“I already lived paycheck to paycheck… it’s not enough to cover everything,” says Palmer.
“I’m not on welfare, I don’t intend to be on welfare, I am able to work and I want to be at work.”
Palmer is optimistic – despite the prognosis.
“Statistically, not a lot of people make it through the five-year mark, so the overall outlook isn’t good and I’ve already reached my one year mark. It’s going to be a major landmark if I make it to the third year.”
The bills are piling up and the cancer is seemingly getting worse, so is the shutdown.
“I don’t really think [Congress] knows what it’s like to wonder whether you should pay for your utility bill or your cancer treatment, or buy food, or pay for your child’s lunch at school.”
There is a GoFundMe page and her eldest son has taken out loans to help out. Additionally, there’s a chance that she could get some back paid once the shutdown ends.
Still, Palmer is in limbo but is determined to beat her cancer.
“I also have a child still at home that is now 16 and I would like to see him there through his 18th year and graduation.”