Action Alert

NYAIL Action Alert 2.16.17 - Wage Crisis in Consumer Direction

This alert comes to NYAIL from the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Associtation of NYS (CDPAANYS).

There is a crisis in CDPA! We need YOU to act if we are going to fix it.

CDPAANYS has started a new campaign called Real Lives, Real Jobs in an effort to increase funding to community-based long term care programs like CDPA so that we can raise wages for the workforce and improve the stability of the workforce. But, in the end, if we are to succeed, we need those who use and work in the program to speak up. This campaign tells the story of the consumers and PAs who are impacted by the crisis that exists today. Why? Because those who use the program and those who work in the program are CDPA.

But, this crisis is not a sudden occurence, it is the result of a decade's worth of neglect of the Medicaid community-based long term care system by the State, in favor of funding for hospitals and nursing homes.

A decade ago, wages were decent. Nobody was going to get rich working as a personal assistant; but, people could work a full-time job knowing they could go home, pay the rent, feed their kids and get a good night sleep knowing they were financially secure.

Today, in the best case scenario, people are making what they did 10 years ago. In too many cases, reimbursement cuts have actually forced wages down.

We need to say this again.

In many cases, wages for workers in CDPA today are lower than they were 10 years ago. 

Why is this? It is because the state, often through managed care, is paying less than it did 10 years ago.

The only way to fix this is to demand change!

We know that these cuts are threating the future of CDPA and the consumers who rely on it. As consumers and workers, you know best what this will mean, because you are living it. Low reimbursement means low wages. Low wages means you cannot attract or keep your workers. Without reliable and high quality workers, you lose your ability to direct your own services.

This problem has gone on too long. CDPAANYS has fought for increases for years, only to be told there is no money.

There can be no more excuses.

We must demand legislators and the Governor ACT NOW to address this crisis.

Without State action to safeguard CDPA, wages will fall; the worker shortage will rise.

In just more than a year, we have seen Fidelis cut their reimbursement by almost $2 per hour. We saw GuildNet cut reimbursement by $3/hr., and then saw Northshore-LIJ follow suit. Now, on March 1, Agewell will join them. They too will lower rates by $3/hour.

This cannot last. We must act to stop it now.
The work of Personal Assistants, which enables adults to stay in their own homes and out of institutions, has become minimum wage work. 

The state is ok with CDPA as a minimum wage job.

The state is ok with our workers making over a dollar less per hour than workers at McDonald's.
We need you to reach out to your Legislators and the Governor and let them know minimum wage is not enough. Let them know your workers deserve at least as much as those at McDonald's.

ACT NOW to save CDPA. There may not be a tomorrow.
There is a crisis in CDPA!
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