SEIU home care workers and consumer allies have led the fight to raise the standards for both direct caregivers and, more importantly, consumers of care. This is why we linked arms with 600 other home care workers from around the country to be a part of the Caring Across Generations campaign launch today in Washington, DC.
Home care workers from California, Indiana, Illinois and Virginia -- members of SEIU Locals and other unions -- all made it to the nation's Capitol to be counted as "present" for this important work.
Created by The National Domestic Workers' Alliance and Jobs with Justice, Caring Across Generations aims at building a broad based coalition that will create momentum to address the issues that are critical to solving the country's long term care crisis: job creation and job quality, training and workforce development, creating paths to citizenship, and establishing stronger family supports.
At today's launch, SEIU Health Care Chair, Dr. L. Toni Lewis addressed the challenges ahead:
"There are still states that skirt federal minimum wage laws, there are still home care workers that provide quality but have no access to affordable health care for themselves or their families, and there are still home care workers who cannot afford to get sick because it means they will not get paid. It may not happen this year, and it may not happen next year, but together, we are going to change this and make it right."
When Dr. Lewis explained what this is about is, "faith, dignity, justice, respect..." she told everyone to say it with her, and the room erupted with "faith, dignity, justice, respect!"
All SEIU members, whether they're home care workers or not, can stand behind the Caring Across Generations Core Values
- Access to a dignified quality of life for all
- Access to dignified, quality jobs for all
- Respect for the dignity and value of care work
- Respect for older adults and people with disabilities
- Recognition that intergenerational relationships strengthen the soul of the nation, and support so that these relationships can flourish
- Recognition of the positive societal impact of full inclusion of people with disabilities, and support for community integration over institutionalization
- Recognition of the many forms of caregiving relationships, including family caregiving and mutual support relationships
- Recognition that we are all interdependent, and that people who receive care also give care
If you care about the future of your loved ones, take action to support the campaign by visiting CaringAcrossGenerations.org.