A local fast-food chain in the U.S. is handing out free burgers to federal workers who found themselves on unpaid leave as the U.S. government shut down on Tuesday.
The proprietor and founder of the chain told Agence France-Presse that “if people don't go to work, they can come and get a burger” at four Z-Burger locations in the national capital region.
Peter Tabibian, whose family emigrated from Iran in the 1980s, explained that he wanted to help out civil servants who make up a big part of his clientele, but acknowledged that he would lose money “if this thing goes on for 20 days.”
The offer is open to those on unpaid leave: federal employees, contractors and municipal workers in Washington, upon presentation of an ID card.
The offer is generous considering that there are 320,000 federal employees in Washington and its adjacent suburbs.
The known-on effects of a federal shutdown could see the temporary closure of tourist attractions in the national capital. It could also suspend waste collection in the area.
According to Stephen Fuller, an economist at George Mason University outside Washington, the region could lose about $200 per day of the U.S. government closure, the Washington Post reported.