Thursday, March 3, 2011

Five Myths About Federal Employees

Five Myths About Federal Employees
#1 Most federal employees live near Washington D.C.
That is false. 85% of federal employees live outside of the D.C. metro area.
Example: Texas has more federal employees than Maryland.
Example: Alaska has more federal employees per capita than the state of Virginia.

#2 The federal government is bigger now than 60 years ago.
That is false. In 1962 there were 13.2 federal workers for every 1000 Americans.
In 2011 there are 8.4 federal workers for every 1000 Americans.

#3 It is almost impossible to fire a federal employee.
That is false. In 2010 over 11,667 employees were fired.

#4 Most federal employees work for agencies that have something to do with education, regulation or welfare.
That is false. Most federal employees work for agencies that have something to do with
national security. The smallest executive branch department are Education and HUD.

#5 Federal employees earn far more than private sector employees.
That is false. Federal employees earn around 20 per cent less than their private sector
counterparts. The doctors and nurses at Walter Reed makes less than most doctors and
nurses in private practice. An accountant scrunching numbers at IRS or as an army
makes less than someone in private practice working for the nation's top accounting firms.

Why did I publish this list of the top five government myths? Because perception is reality.
So if people on the street think these myths are true, we need to make them aware of the facts. By the way, person who compiled this list of federal myths was Max Stier who wrote about this in December 2010 in an article for The Washington Post. I wish that article had been picked up by every newspaper in the United States.

Will there ever by a day when we do not need one single federal worker?
As long as we have children who need educations,
folks who drive on roads and bridges for either work or pleasure,
people who like visiting national parks,
folks who want to use electricity to power their homes and appliances from coal, wind, nuclear,
folks who like our country protected from foreign invaders and terrorists,
folks who want cures for themselves and friends with breast cancer, leukemia, alzheimers,
folks who live in a state with a national disaster like an earthquake or hurricane
we will need federal workers.

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