Posted September 14, 2019 12:16:30The day after President Donald Trump took office, the US Department of Labor announced it was going to cut $1.2 billion in funding to nearly 30,000 human resources programs and jobs, as part of its broader efforts to streamline the government.
“This is the first step towards the elimination of human resources as we know it,” said a statement by the department, which said the cuts were intended to eliminate “the administrative burdens and the duplicative responsibilities of the agencies involved” in human resources.
While the announcement came in the midst of the worst month in history for the government, it’s a major blow for workers in the United States, many of whom rely on government jobs for a large chunk of their income.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that there are now more than 6 million people in the workforce who are employed in the federal government, according to data from the National Center for Education Statistics.
“When we cut funding to the human resources sector, we’re cutting a huge swath of people out of the workforce, and that cuts a lot of people off from their basic human needs,” said Matt Levine, a senior policy analyst at the Center for American Progress.
“There are a lot more people out there who are doing work that doesn’t need human resources.”
The announcement has come as the Trump administration struggles to find new and creative ways to streamlining the bureaucracy.
Trump and his aides have taken steps to overhaul the US workforce, including hiring hundreds of thousands of temporary workers to help manage a massive backlog of federal contracts.
Trump has also tried to slash many of the federal employees’ benefits, including pensions and healthcare.
The cuts could also affect thousands of private-sector jobs that rely heavily on the federal workforce.
“This cuts is a big blow to the private sector,” said Mike Biesek, an associate professor at Cornell University’s business school.
“They’re going to have to hire more people to keep their businesses going.”
In the past, the federal human resources agency has faced criticism for the way it manages its budget, with a recent report concluding that it “does not manage its budget efficiently or effectively.”
But the cuts came as the agency’s budget was being cut by nearly $500 million in 2020, which was largely due to the effects of the Great Recession.
The Trump administration has also made some changes to the way that it spends taxpayer money, including cutting the Department of Homeland Security’s budget by nearly a third.
While many of these cuts are in the past tense, they are likely to affect future years.
Many of the people who have received severance pay from the government are likely already working for another employer and would likely not qualify for the federal benefits that would be affected by the cuts.
“It’s hard to see what the effects will be for these people,” said Bieset, “especially when you’ve got the sequester and sequestration coming up.”