When the government shuts down, flight traffic controllers don't get to take leave or find other work.
What started as a single gesture of kindness towards US air traffic controllers working in Anchorage, Alaska who are obligated to work without pay as the US government shutdown continues has become an industry-wide movement. As of Sunday, more than 300 pizzas have been sent to 49 American flight traffic controller centres across the country from their Canadian counterparts.
"It was a true grassroots movement," Canadian Air Traffic Control Association president Peter Duffy told BBC. "They talk to those people daily on the phone...so they consider them co-workers and they said, hey, let's send them some pizza."
Trump's government shutdown is now the longest in US history, spanning 23 days at the time of writing. The shutdown has affected 800,000 government employees, with around 450,000 required to continue working despite not getting paid. While Trump continues to hold out for funding to build his US-Mexico border wall—an expensive project that isn't likely to produce the results he claims it will—the country's federal infrastructure is suffering.
Duffy says Canadians will continue to support American flight traffic controllers and are urging Trump to end the shutdown as soon as possible. And with any luck that'll actually happen, and these hardworking folks won't have to worry about affording basic necessities like food much longer.