NBC: Two Sides to the Home Care Wage Debate
Home care workers gained a “victory” as the result of the wage rule decision last week that granted overtime and minimum wage protections to the workforce, writes CNBC in an article on the changes. Yet opponents say the change will not benefit those receiving care, nor those providing it.
“The move is a major victory for advocates of in-home health care workers. They have long argued that the fast-growing profession has evolved beyond its origins providing informal companionship to elderly people and into a much more complex job providing medical and other care,” CNBC writes.
“… But opponents say the new protections will make in-home care more expensive for families and government programs such as Medicaid that pay for such services, and that it could result in a reduction in covered services.”
CNBC spoke with with one home care provider in New Jersey, which already has protections for home care workers, who said she has already become a salaried employee rather than an hourly worker.
However, “…her pay is the equivalent to the hourly rate she would receive for working eight hours, but the logic is that it’s a fair rate because she also receives room and board as a live-in aide.”
The wage protections have been long sought after among employee advocacy groups, but ongoing opposition continues in response.
“What this means for patients is less care. What it means for aides and caregivers is less work and reduced compensation,” Andrea Devoti, chair of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice told NBCNews.com.
Written by Elizabeth Ecker