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Fort Drum civilian workers picket furloughs

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Fort Drum civilian workers picket furloughs
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Furloughed civilian workers signaled for honks and cheers of support from passing vehicles on Arsenal Street Thursday. Despite the difficult time they're going through, as YNN's Elizabeth Jeneault tells us, picketing together is making the group feel stronger.

WATERTOWN, N.Y. -- Federal employees have taken hit after hit. From the last furlough to the sequester, pay freezes and the current shutdown, it's hard for civilian workers on Fort Drum to just keep soldiering on.

"The hits keep on coming," said American Federation of Government Employees Local 400 President Jeffrey Zuhlke. "So it's a constant job to try to get people to keep their heads up and keep fighting. Doing what's right."

Members of the AFGE picketed for a second day in Public Square Thursday. They hope as people drive by, they'll see the colorful signs and understand what government workers are going through.

"We have gotten lots of support," said AFGE Local 400 Vice President Loren Zeilnhofer. "People are going by, they're honking. They understand the message we're carrying."

The picketers say they are overwhelmed by the amount of support the community and the local businesses have given them. They say things like food, coffee and even a place to use a restroom have really helped them out over the past two days. But protesters say it's really about the bigger picture.

"This is more than just us. This is a problem that's facing all of America, but we feel an obligation to be out here to really carry that message," said Zeilnhofer.

A message they're getting across, one car at a time.

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