A snowstorm, the longest government shutdown and withdrawing troops from Syria

Know/inform/care for the week of Jan. 8-Jan. 14


Mount Vental in Israel overlooks Syria, a country ravaged by an ongoing civil war.


Know: Over 10 inches of snow fell amongst the St. Louis area, Jan. 11.

Inform: Snowfalls ranged from eight to 12 inches of snow across Missouri. The snow began, Jan. 11, prompting RSD to call a half-day. The weather continued through Saturday morning as temperatures stayed below freezing. While street crews rushed out Friday afternoon to treat the roads, traffic backed up for over 12 hours in some places. St. Louis Lambert International Airport cancelled over 100 flights, delaying others.  

Care: Following the RSD half-day, Jan. 11, EHS adjusted the schedule for the week of Jan. 14-Jan. 18. The schedule will be C-B-C-A-A, with Friday, Jan. 18 being a half-day leading into the extended weekend for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.


Know: The U.S. Government shutdown has officially become the longest shutdown in history, Jan. 12.

Inform: President Donald Trump shut down the federal government in an attempt to get the funding for his proposed border wall, Dec. 21. Trump is looking for $5.7 billion to build the wall, a key point he emphasized during his race for President. Over 800,000 government workers did not receive paychecks, Jan. 11 because of the shutdown. Employees have been forced to either take an unpaid vacation or work without pay. Without pay, lower-class families have missed rent, car payments and are struggling to pay for healthcare and childcare expenses. The shutdown has lasted 24 days, surpassing the previous record of 21 days.

Care: Not only are government employees suffering from the shutdown, but the economy is taking losses, as well. Estimates show that the shutdown will drop the gross-domestic-product by over $1 billion each week. Trump has threatened to declare a national emergency if Congress cannot reach an agreement on his spending bill to fund a wall, a statement he has since retracted. The government shutdown has already had major effects on the lives of government employees and is beginning to take a toll on the economy. While it is unsure when the shutdown will end, Trump has said that he would keep the government in its current state for years until the funding for a border wall is provided.


Know: The United States has begun withdrawing troops from Syria.

Inform: While the timeline is not being released for safety concerns, the U.S. has announced that the 2,000 troops deployed will be departing soon. Despite bringing home troops, the U.S. will still be pressuring the Islamic State. Syria is about to enter its eighth year in their civil war, which has ravaged the country, killing 400,000 and displacing 11 million. Additionally, President Donald Trump has threatened to “economically devastate” Turkey if they attack Kurdish forces in Syria. Turkish Foreign Minister Melvut Cavusoglu refuted Trump’s threat, saying that no threat on the economy could stop them.  

Care: The U.S. has accepted over 16,000 Syrian refugees since war broke out in 2011. The civil war is a humanitarian crisis, with over 13.1 million Syrians needing some sort of assistance. At least 70 percent of Syrians live on less than $1.90 a day. With Syria in such a vulnerable position, the U.S. withdrawing troops puts the U.S. in a unique position. Now, the U.S. will not be able to serve the Syrians on the front lines and the only true form of aid that the U.S. could provide is asylum. Without the U.S. in Syria, the situation becomes even more vulnerable with Syrians lacking supplies and aid that they may need.