LA Daily News, the second-largest Los Angeles daily newspaper, just released this article outlining our fight for a living wage for home care workers. Read the article below:
Los Angeles County’s budget for the fiscal year beginning Sunday may be $750 million more than originally expected, officials said Monday.
The Board of Supervisors postponed voting on the budget until Tuesday, to wait for additional details on the state budget and how it would affect the county.
The largest chunk of the $750-million difference was made up of more than $270 million in realignment funds from the state, which has handed off some public safety responsibilities to the county.
But the additional funds may not help the county tackle one of the bigger issues it is facing during budget deliberations this week. The union for in-home caregivers has been aggressively pushing for a small wage hike for its members, an effort that has won support from some supervisors even as spending overall remains tight.
The caregivers currently make $9 an hour and are asking for $9.65 an hour, the living wage standard.
Laphonza Butler, president of SEIU United Long Term Care Workers’ Union, which represents the caregivers, appealed to the board Monday.
“You’ve heard from the families of home care providers about how much earning a living wage would mean to them, how much more medicine they would be able to buy, how much more food they would be able to purchase, how much more security earning a living wage could bring to their homes and to their families and indeed to their communities,” she said.
“This wage increase will help to get Los Angeles County healthy,” she added.
The union represents thousands of people who care for the elderly and the disabled – usually their relatives – at home. The program enables the county and the state to save money that would otherwise have been used to provide care in more expensive facilities.
This article was originally posted at http://www.dailynews.com/ci_20937137/l-county-budget-may-be-up-750m