Get a Life

By Judith Welles

Blog archive

Get a Life: Front page challenge

Thanks to readers for the many pertinent comments on last week’s blog on the perks of government work. 

Regardless of differences from the private sector, there is general agreement that people don’t work for government for money alone. As one noted, “Let's not forget that's the reason we are here. Not for the pay or benefits…”

The importance of government work and workers made the front page of today’s Washington Post with the headline “Government Gets Chance To Prove It Can Work.” The emphasis was on the challenge that the stimulus legislation represents for federal  workers to provide prompt and accurate handling of the new spending requirements.

There was even the suggestion that employees who had basically been sitting in the back of the room doing routine work in distributing weatherization grants would suddenly be on the front line. 

Since it seemed to be an expansion of a program that employees are already skilled at handling, it isn’t clear to me why their work had not been viewed as challenging or frontline before.  

In fact, for federal workers whose line of work is in the field of energy or in infrastructure such as highways, back room has always been frontline, just not on the front page. 

Now, there is better understanding and greater urgency to jobs that have not had the attention or funding so necessary to maintaining a healthy infrastructure and economy.

Along with the challenge comes of the opportunity for federal workers to prove again to the public that they have very special jobs to do and know how to do them. 

Or as another commenter put it: “…those of us who do work our butts off deserve the perks that we are getting.”


Posted by Judith Welles on Feb 23, 2009 at 12:12 PM


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