Saturday, May 21, 2022

Play

The election fraud movement resurfaces on the campaign trail, Vice President Harris and abortion providers discuss an action plan, and as New Mexico's wildfires rage, nearby states face high fire danger.

Play

Pennsylvania's Republican U.S. Senate Primary still too close to call, a $40 billion Ukraine aid bill is headed to President Biden's desk, and Oklahoma passes the strictest abortion bill in the country.

Play

From off-Broadway to West Virginia: the stories of the deadly Upper Big Branch mine explosion, baby formula is on its way back to grocery shelves, and federal funds will combat consolidation in meatpacking.

WA At-Home Caregivers Stand Firm in Contract Negotiations

Play

Monday, February 1, 2021   

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- At-home caregivers for people with disabilities and older Washingtonians are holding the line in budget talks with the state.

Individual provider members of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) 775 are negotiating their contract for the next two years. They don't want to be swept up in potential budget cuts during the pandemic.

Dora Poqui, caregiver and union member, said the state contracts workers for certain hours, but they often provide care around the clock, especially if they're helping out a family member.

"You're limited with the hours they do contract you for and sometimes, the second job, you're not able to work out of the house because these clients that we take care of, they require that hands-on," Poqui explained.

Lawmakers have pushed back because of the unusual budget year during the COVID-19 pandemic. The state is looking at a $3.3 billion shortfall through 2023, according to a forecast from last year.

SEIU 775 members' top priorities in contract negotiations include affordable health-care premiums, no-cost personal protective equipment and ensuring there's language barring harassment, abuse and discrimination at work.

Poqui believes agreeing to their contract proposal would be more affordable than moving their patients to nursing homes.

"The state is saying they can't afford to give us raises, right? But yet if they are put into a facility, the facility requires that 24-hour care," Poqui argued. "They're going to be spending more money at the facilities than what we're asking for."

Poqui also noted wages need to keep up with the cost of living.

"We're already at a point where the cost of living has gone up," Poqui maintained. "I mean, everything's so high right now and then for us to get any hours taken or cut would really affect us."

The workers' contract expires at the end of June.

Reporting by Washington News Service funded in part by SEIU Local 775.


get more stories like this via email

Over the past two years, pro-democracy groups say more than 30 states have proposed nearly 230 laws viewed as an attempt to undermine elections. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Examples of proposed policies and candidates tied to false claims of election fraud have spread to Minnesota, and a new national report found the …


Environment

New Mexico continues to battle the largest wildfires in its history, and other states including Nevada, along with parts of Arizona and Colorado…

Social Issues

A new museum exhibition in Baltimore opening to the public today aims to tell the story of Maryland's fight for civil rights, both in the past and …


The Federation of Virginia Food Banks' seven regional food banks distributed approximately 165 million pounds of food in 2021. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Virginia's food banks are facing a perfect storm of issues. High inflation for everyday goods is driving up food costs for lower-income families…

Health and Wellness

Vice President Kamala Harris met with abortion providers from Missouri and other restrictive states Thursday to consider ways the Biden administration…

The fatality rate for Black bike riders is 30% higher than for white bike riders, according to the League of American Bicyclists. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Today is National Bike to Work Day, and while it may sound "easier said than done," it may not be as daunting as you think. Enthusiasts said the …

Environment

Connecticut is celebrating its first estuary reserve, which will help identify environmental threats to waterways and natural resources. …

Health and Wellness

A new report urges states to take steps to minimize Medicaid coverage loss when the state of emergency for the pandemic comes to an end. COVID …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021