From under a tent erected to protect them from the rain, three state workers addressed the media as nearly 30 Service Employees Union International (SEUI) members stood behind to show solidarity, and answer questions.
A few dozen state workers gathered on the steps in front of the Department of Social Services in downtown Sacramento on the first-ever "Furlough Friday."
State worker Rod Gonzalez, a Geographical Information Systems Analyst for the Department of Fish and Game said, "the Governor wants to save $1.3 billion, but [furlough days] will have a negative impact on the economy, costing nearly $3 billion to the state. It’s like taking one step forward and two steps back."
One of the keynote speakers, Bridget Jacobo, a Department of Social Services Disability Evaluation Analyst, noted, "I work for a federally-funded program, and the furlough is wreaking havoc on my department because we are forced to take the day off."
DMV worker Roland Becht, who also addressed the public audience, added that "there’s no cost saving for the state" in furloughing workers.
"250,000 licenses and registrations will not be processed today," said Becht. "You won’t want to go to the DMV on Monday."
Besides, Becht added, "That’s going to create a whole lot of overtime. There’s another problem created that we didn’t even have before."