HuffPost: Direct-Care Workers Need Better Wages

While the White House discusses the struggle many women face balancing jobs and family life during the Summit on Working Families, a contributor for The Huffington Post Politics argues more attention should be placed on home health care workers.

Jobs in the home care industry are expected to grow to nearly 5 million by 2022 — more than nurses, school teachers and all public safety workers. Nearly 90 percent of direct-care workers are women.

“With median wages near $10 per hour, many direct-care workers struggle to support their families,” writes Jodi M. Sturgeon, president of the Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute. “About half the workforce lives in households that rely on public benefits such as housing support, food stamps and Medicaid to make ends meet.”


Complicating the industry’s prevalence of low pay are uncertain hours; demanding physical tasks, which often lead to injury on the job; few health benefit plans, if any; and lack of adequate training or on-the-job support.

Better wages, paid leave and advancement training opportunities are some ways the sector could improve working conditions for direct-care workers.

Read the full article here


Written by Cassandra Dowell