Concerns in Arizona are mounting — amid the longest partial government shutdown in history — over financial assistance for victims of crime, flight delays, a devastating fire season and the piles of garbage at state national parks.

U.S. Rep. Greg Stanton, D-Ariz., held a panel discussion Monday afternoon where he listened to federal workers and other Arizonans struggling to make ends meet amid the  government shutdown, which entered its 31st day.  

A compromise between Congressional Democrats and Republicans has faltered amid the president's continued push to fund a $5.7 billion border wall.

The meeting at Changing Hands Bookstore in Phoenix opened with Stanton equating the shutdown to a hostage situation and demanding policy discussions be held with an open and running government. 

"The goal should be to get this government open as soon as possible," Stanton said. "And then we should sit down and have a discussion about any policy proposal and go through the normal process."

Denise Ensdorff, CEO of Arizona's Children Association, said federal payments through the Victims of Crime Act ceased on Friday.

Ensdorff said her statewide organization is large enough to weather the lack of revenue, but those suffering include family-advocacy and rape-crisis centers that rely entirely on funding through the federal program.

Judd Sampson, a forest geologist at Tonto National Forest, said fire-management programs such as controlled burns have stalled since the shutdown, which could lead to a more devastating fire season for Arizonans.

Sampson said cleaning the growing amounts of trash left in national forests and parks across the state will siphon resources from other programs. 

"It's just becoming a massive pile of waste," Sampson said. "And we're going to have to spend most of our time and most of our budget this year when we go back to clean it up. So we will be behind on wildfire prevention and we will be behind on habitat restoration."

Jovan Petkovic, a secretary of the American Federation of Government Employees Local 1250 chapter, said Transportation Security Administration employees are doing their best to keep Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport running. However, he warned that work attendance would likely fall as employees struggle to pay their expenses.

Brian Fox, facility representative with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association, said air-traffic controllers are working without support staff such as quality assurance, and that more flights could be delayed or canceled as they struggle to keep up.

Fox said a long-term shutdown could eventually compromise flight safety.

Stanton told attendees that he would continue to support bipartisan legislation and appropriation bills while working with Congress to reopen the government. But Stanton lamented that trust in government had eroded.

"This thing is going to have long-lasting impact even when it's over," Stanton said.

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