A survey by the NTEU union of its local officials showed that more than half believe the general federal hiring freeze already is starting to have an impact, with 55 percent of the roughly 900 respondents saying that workloads are increasing as vacancies are going unfilled.

Nearly two-thirds said their agency’s funding is insufficient to meet the mission; more than three-fourths said employees in their workplace are worried about their job security; and a similar share agreed that they “wish Congress and the public understood that federal employees are middle-class workers facing the same economic challenges as other Americans.”

Four-fifths meanwhile said that morale at their agency is declining or already poor.