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57 ways sequester could sting

February 18, 2013: 3:10 PM ET

I was going to list 58 but figured I had made the point: The sequester would touch many, many government programs and services. These 57 are a somewhat random sampling of what could happen on March 1. (Read this but please also check out my calendar of "fiscal cliff crazy" and new FAQ on the sequester.)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE

  • All FBI workers furloughed for up to 14 days
  • More than 36,000 Bureau of Prisons workers furloughed for average of 12 days
  • 5,100 Marshals Service workers furloughed for up to 13 days
  • Increased safety risk for prison inmates and staff
  • Fewer firearms inspections

DEFENSE

  • Up to 46,000 temporary workers laid off
  • Up to 800,000 full-time civilian workers furloughed for up to 22 days
  • Training curtailed
  • Ship, aircraft, weapons-systems and facilities maintenance curbed
  • Reduced readiness for two-thirds of active Army brigade combat teams and most Air Force flying units

EDUCATION

  • Up to 70,000 kids lose access to Head Start programs
  • More than 14,000 teachers and staff laid off
  • Cuts in support for up to 1.2 million disadvantaged students
  • 33,000 fewer students on work-study
  • 71,000 fewer recipients of supplemental grants

ENERGY AND NUCLEAR SAFETY

  • Reduced oversight and audits of Energy Department nuclear facilities
  • Delayed cleanup of Cold War nuclear weapons sites
  • Curtailed operation at basic science labs
  • Slowdown in development of oil, gas and coal on federal land and water

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

  • Cuts to foreign and humanitarian aid
  • Reduced ability to help Americans abroad
  • Constraints on counter-terrorism efforts

HEALTH AND SAFETY

  • Nationwide shutdown of meat and poultry plants for up to 15 days
  • 2,100 fewer FDA safety inspections of food manufacturers
  • Increased risk of wildfires
  • 1,200 fewer inspections of dangerous workplaces
  • Up to 91,000 lose access to substance abuse treatment
  • 424,000 fewer HIV tests

HOMELAND SECURITY

  • Many frontline law enforcement personnel furloughed for up to 14 days
  • Reduced border security
  • Scaled back cyber security protection of infrastructure

HOUSING

  • 100,000 removed from housing and emergency shelter programs
  • 125,000 may lose benefits from Housing Choice Voucher program
  • 75,000 fewer households get foreclosure prevention, rental, pre-purchase counseling
  • Deferred maintenance and repairs in public housing

JOB TRAINING

  • Training centers for low-income youth may be closed
  • More than 1 million fewer people get help finding a job

PARKS AND THE OUTDOORS

  • Reduced hours and services at national parks, refuges and public lands
  • 128 refuges to close or eliminate programs

SAFETY NET

  • Unemployment benefits cut by up to 9.4%
  • 4 million fewer meals to seniors
  • $160 million cut from state grants to help the disabled get work
  • Cuts to Native American programs, including those aiding neediest
  • 300,000 women and children lose food aid
  • Up to 30,000 kids lose child care services

SOCIAL SECURITY

  • 1,500 temporary Social Security Administration workers let go
  • Loss through attrition of over 5,000 workers
  • Delays for visitors at field offices and 800-number callers
  • 2-week delays for initial disability claims decisions

TAXES

  • Delays in getting answers to tax questions
  • Fewer tax return reviews
  • Reduced capacity to detect and prevent fraud
  • Fewer counter-terrorism and anti-laundering investigations

TRAVEL

  • Increased wait times at airports
  • Delays in visa processing by State Department
  • Reduced air traffic
  • Delays and disruptions during summer travel
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About This Author
Jeanne Sahadi
Jeanne Sahadi
Senior Writer, CNNMoney

Jeanne Sahadi is a senior writer at CNNMoney, where she covers anything with the word "trillion" in it: Specifically, the federal budget, federal debt, federal taxes and federal spending. She tweets at @jjsahadi

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