Many FBI agents based in cities with a high cost of living are struggling to make ends meet, forcing them to make hours-long commutes or double up in apartments, according to bureau and Justice Department officials.

Natalie Bara, president of the FBI Agents Association, said she’s heard from two or three agents sharing an apartment near New York City, and others who commute four hours each day, back and forth to their field offices. Some circumstances are even more extreme, she added.

“They’re having to juggle being able to afford rent and/or utilities versus being able to actually buy groceries, so it’s getting to a level where it’s becoming very, very difficult to not only recruit agents into these high cost of living areas, but also retain them in those areas,” said Bara, who is a second-generation FBI agent.

  • llamapocalypse
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    1351 month ago

    This CERTAINLY couldn’t have any national security consequences, nope.

  • @shadow_wanker
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    791 month ago

    Good thing this doesn’t make them more prone to taking bribes…

    • LustyArgonianMana
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      1 month ago

      Right? This article is like an advertisement to foreign governments and criminal orgs

  • Flying Squid
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    791 month ago

    I just… I don’t… do I feel bad for cops when they can’t afford houses either?

    This one is a hard one, but I kind of fall on the side of empathy here…

    • @FireRetardant
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      631 month ago

      Everyone should deserve a home. Maybe that home should be a cell if you’re a racist power tripping murderer, but if you out here genuinely trying to protect your community/country, you deserve a home.

      • bean
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        71 month ago

        And full healthcare, especially for rural volunteer firefighters and emergency medical technicians, many of them are volunteers. They deserve to be protected and treated fully by the services they put their lives on the line to provide for.

        • @FireRetardant
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          41 month ago

          Some even have to pay for their training and their equipment. I get needing barriers for entry to dangerous positions but that feels like an economic barrier for an essential service.

          • @[email protected]
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            51 month ago

            It’s funny in a depressing way. The people who may save your life in a car crash are running off 4 hours of sleep and debating wether to spend money on food or cell service. An ambulance ride can easily cost north of 1k for you. The EMTs might get like $40 each.

    • @[email protected]
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      311 month ago

      Apparently this has to be explained since many people are making this mistake: FBI agents are not cops. They are investigators. They investigate crimes. They don’t sit around eating donuts or drive around a local “beat”.

      They are the main organization investigating hate crimes and all those Jan 6 nuts. They didn’t arrest your friend for a joint back in 2015.

      • Flying Squid
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        01 month ago

        Can they arrest people accused of committing crimes? Yes. They’re cops. They’re just not city cops.

    • @[email protected]
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      211 month ago

      Maybe the silver lining is that an FBI employee gets paid roughly the same as every other federal agency employee, barring some weird locality and specialization pays.

      It’s not as powerful to say a national parks employee or a bureau of X worker is struggling to make ends meet because they’re typically not exciting or sexy conversation points. I wholeheartedly believe that this is affecting way more than just the FBI workforce.

      What we’re seeing is that costs have risen above and beyond what every single typical government employee is making and that lawmakers have not made any deliberate efforts to increase federal pay outside of the yearly sub-inflation pay increases. Add to that the inability to pass budgets on time and you have a few million people who aren’t getting paid enough to match their lifestyle for the previous year, every year, with added stressors of somehow saving money to account for not being paid for indeterminate amounts of time thanks to government shutdowns which are solved literal hours before coming into effect. Federal service isn’t a glamorous or high paying career field, but it’s supposed to be a stable one which provides enough to live with. Now, we’re seeing that slowly erode.

      • Flying Squid
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        131 month ago

        But will the blame be placed on the right people, or will this once again be people falling for “progressives are communists” propaganda?

        • @[email protected]
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          91 month ago

          I see two solutions. Lawmakers can increase federal schedule pay or the private sector (retail, landlords?) can reduce their prices.

          Expecting companies to drop prices of most goods and services even 10% to match pre-COVID values is unrealistic and unlikely. Expecting some mass movement to reduce revenue and profit in the name of humanity is some sci-fi utopian plot line.

          Lawmakers increasing pay is more realistic, but still unlikely. We’re slowly seeing more people aware of the dysfunction from within congress, but millions of people still vote in representatives that poison budget bills that directly affect their livelihoods.

          It’s almost like the reverse of that quote that I’ll butcher: “it’s hard for a man to understand something when his salary depends on not understanding it.” I almost want to say they get what they deserve, but they make the same bed as so many others who have to suffer the consequences and are trying to make a difference.

          • masterofn001
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            -11 month ago

            No. No. No.

            The real, and only solution (as devised by uber-mega-filthy-bloodyhands-wealthy) is:

            Abolish government. Private cops, Private law and order, Private power

            But only theirs.

            And once theirs, the private cops will be lavishly remunerated.

            The basic playbook: blame it, break it, destroy it, control it.

      • @[email protected]
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        1 month ago

        And a pension plan eating 4.4% of every paycheck that they totally promise won’t go the way of social security and be empty by the time most new hires will be able to retire (lol retirement, good one). There is a MASSIVE block of federal employees approaching retirement, and already eligible for it.

      • @Cocodapuf
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        1 month ago

        A major difference between FBI agents and most other government positions, is that FBI agents don’t get to decide where they want to work. They list their “preferences” about what city they would like to work in and then those preferences are largely ignored. In other words, the local cost of living whenever they end up is completely out of their control.

        It doesn’t matter if the agent lives in Phoenix, and listed it as their top preference, the LA, NY and Chicago branches are the largest, so that’s where many agents will end up. What might be a great salary for living in Phoenix, is probably totally unmanageable for living in NYC.

    • @blackbelt352
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      171 month ago

      I might not feel as bad for them, they certainly made their choice of career to be cops, but at the end of the day its the institutions under capitalsim that hurt us the most, the individuals are just tools of the system, if Billy-bob McOfficer quits being a cop, Randall DiCopper will be there to replace them and the system continues.

      And even though they are cops, they are also human beings too, also caught up in an abusive and exploitative system.

    • @TOModera
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      71 month ago

      They were subject to the same propaganda we all were and no one is immune, so yes, feeling empathy is OK.

      Also there is a huge potential problem when you give a group lots of power and then under pay them. They are a lot easier to bribe.

  • GingaNinga
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    591 month ago

    thats gonna be a national security issue at some point, financials are important in vulnerable sector checks. just pay your guys a decent wage, thats what work is for unless the whole social contract thing is breaking down.

  • @[email protected]
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    431 month ago

    Maybe they’ll do something about rent when the pigs need it?

    Ah, who am I kidding? They’ll get a raise and the rest of us can drown.

  • @Pixlbabble
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    381 month ago

    Housing is a problem now that feds can’t afford it?

  • @foggy
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    291 month ago

    Cops are supposed to be the line between the haves and the have-nots, sociologically speaking. They exist to enforce the rules of the haves upon the have-nots to keep the two separate.

    If the line falls into have-not territory, the rich get eaten.

    If I pay you handsomely to punch strangers in the face, you have a price. But at a certain price you’d opt to punch me in the face instead.

    • @FireRetardant
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      81 month ago

      I worry that if captiallism continues too far the elites will control police forces by giving them just enough to feel wealthy and forcing them to oppress those with less by threatening their livelihood if they don’t.

      • @[email protected]
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        1 month ago

        Right now they are given the power to abuse everyone else in lieu of pay, so we are basically at that same point but with other incentives.

  • @[email protected]
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    1 month ago

    Financial Problems are one of the biggest indicator for trouble when dealing with Security Clearances.

    Very easy decision for someone to ‘share’ documents they shouldn’t if it means making rent, or paying their doctor, or not going hungry.

    That’s why any job with a clearance should make stacks. But here we are…

  • @[email protected]
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    121 month ago

    Oh no, they are in the same financial situation as everyone else!

    Won’t someone think of the poor authoritatians?

  • @[email protected]
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    111 month ago

    Man, I’m glad that’s only a problem for FBI agents and not the rest of the people. Imagine if all of us needed housing and that other thing I used to like… what was its name again? Food?

  • @Chee_Koala
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    91 month ago

    Maybe they just need to pull themselves up by their bootstraps and lay off the Mocca Frappe Latte’s?

  • @phoneymouse
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    1 month ago

    Government pay is garbage. If you’re lucky enough to find a job that gets you to GS-13 you might crack $100 grand. And in most cities, that isn’t enough anymore.