MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — In response to the ongoing federal shutdown, DFL Rep. Zack Stephenson and DFL Sen. Matt Little announced a new plan to deliver state financial assistance to furloughed workers.

Employees working without pay could apply for interest-free personal loans as part of the bipartisan legislation.

“Our federal employees deserve the dignity that everyone feels from working a job, they deserve to able to provide for our families. Our message to our federal employees is that until the federal government gets its act together, we’ve got your back,” Stephenson said.

If approved by the legislature, workers would be eligible for the loans to replace their income up to $5,000 a month, for three months. Currently, there are more than 6,000 federal employees in Minnesota working without pay.

“It’s absolutely the least we can do,” Little said, “These workers are protecting us against terrorists, defending our borders, keeping our food safe, cleaning the environment, and helping injured vets get their benefits. At least we can financially support these innocent families while they’re caught in the political crossfire.”