Furloughs, shutdown damaged DA civilian morale 

When a senior Army Materiel Command executive said, “It’s harder these days to be a public servant,” the audience attending the Department of the Army professional development forum at the Association of the United States Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition on Oct. 23 responded with a loud, “Amen!”

John Nerger, executive deputy to the commander, added, “You can call a civilian anything but don’t call them ‘non-essential.’ He added that he is “troubled by the loss of trust” among civilian employees following the six days of furlough this summer and the government shutdown in early October.  Before, “they thought of their service as a profession.”

He said he is already seeing senior engineers and scientists leaving.

“What is this doing to our cultural of innovation?” Nerger asked.

Nerger added, “We have to make the vow in the Army of never again furloughing our great professional civilians.”