PRESS RELEASE: President Biden’s Jobs Plan Reflects Critical Role Care Workers Play in Rebuilding U.S. Economy - Caring Across Generations

PRESS RELEASE: President Biden’s Jobs Plan Reflects Critical Role Care Workers Play in Rebuilding U.S. Economy

Category:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 31, 2021
Contact: Zameena Mejia, press@domesticworkers.org

 

President Biden’s Jobs Plan Reflects Critical Role
Care Workers Play in Rebuilding U.S. Economy

Statement by Ai-jen Poo, National Domestic Workers Alliance
and Caring Across Generations, and Jess Morales Rocketto, Care in Action

NEW YORK, NY — President Biden today outlined his economic recovery plan in a speech in Pittsburgh. He highlighted the role that care workers, family caregivers and home and community-based services play in our communities and wider economy, and reiterated his commitment to investing in the nation’s care infrastructure. According to advocates, this is a huge moment for care and follows months of organizing and advocacy from millions of caregivers, care workers, aging adults and people with disabilities across the country, for recognition that home and community-based services for the aging and people with disabilities, child care, paid family leave, home and community-based services and good care jobs represent essential infrastructure for economic recovery.

Below is a statement by Ai-jen Poo, executive director of National Domestic Workers Alliance and director of Caring Across Generations. 

“The Biden-Harris Administration’s pledge to invest in care is a historic commitment that will continue to lift up the millions of care workers who are the backbone of our economy. The White House’s recognition is a testament to the hard work of our nation’s home care workers, and family caregivers, who are the heroes who got our families through the pandemic. And it values the lives of those who suffered the most throughout it. Like our physical infrastructure — roads, bridges, green energy — our care infrastructure needs permanent investment  to ensure our communities can thrive. This investment in home and community-based services will mean care workers who work incredibly hard to care for the people who raised us and our loved ones with disabilities, will have economic security, dignity, and family-supporting jobs. Furthermore, individuals and families who have been waiting far too long for the services they need will finally have access to quality care in their homes and communities.

“Congress must invest in the people at the heart of our care infrastructure. Creating good jobs with better pay, benefits and workplace protections — including the right to unionize and a pathway to citizenship — for care workers will ensure they can take care of their own families and feel secure and safe in their jobs, which will ultimately allow them to do their best work and provide the highest quality care.”

Below is a statement by Jess Morales Rocketto, executive director of Care in Action. 

“In 2020, we voted to put care first and today, the Biden-Harris Administration took a huge first step in keeping their campaign promises. President Biden joined the care movement in calling for an investment in the millions of care workers, mostly women of color and immigrant women, as the path toward real economic recovery. Caregivers do crucial, life-saving work every day to ensure our families and loved ones are safe — they shouldn’t have to do it alone. Today’s pledge to invest in care is our opportunity to create the future we know is possible — one where care jobs are good ones that allow workers to provide for their families, have benefits and workplace protections, and provide a pathway to citizenship for millions of workers.

“The people who lift our economy and build our infrastructure don’t just work in factories and wear hard hats — they are caregivers working in homes who keep our country thriving. It’s time they get the investments they deserve to live full, dignified lives.”

Additional Context: 

  • Demand for home care workers increased by 125 percent during the pandemic alone, even as workers remained scarce. Meanwhile, nearly 3 million women across the country have left the workforce over the last year, in large part due to persistent pay inequality, undervalued work, and caregiving responsibilities.
  • Before entering office President Biden proposed a first-of-its-kind $775 billion investment in the care economy, from childcare to long-term supports for elders and people with disabilities. Of that amount, $450 billion would go towards ensuring Medicaid covers home and community-based supports and services—such as homecare workers, caregiver training, and adult daycares—that provide people with choice, independence and the ability to live and age with dignity.
  • More than nine out of 10 voters across the political spectrum agree we need a comprehensive plan to support family caregivers.

Home care workers and family caregivers are available for interviews. Please contact Zameena Mejia at press@domesticworkers.org
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National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) is the leading voice for dignity and fairness for millions of domestic workers in the United States. Founded in 2007, NDWA works for respect, recognition and inclusion in labor protections for domestic workers, the majority of whom are immigrants and women of color. NDWA is powered by over 70 affiliate organizations and local chapters and by a growing membership base of nannies, house cleaners and care workers in over 20 states. NDWA has created Alia, an online platform to help domestic workers access benefits, not otherwise granted to them, in addition to introducing a National Domestic Workers Bill of Rights with now-Vice President Kamala Harris and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal in 2019. Learn more at www.domesticworkers.org

Caring Across Generations is a national movement of families, caregivers, people with disabilities, and aging Americans working to transform the way we care in this country. By harnessing the power of online and grassroots organizing and culture change work, we are shifting how our nation values caregiving and calling for policy solutions that enable all of us to live well and age with dignity. Learn more at http://www.caringacross.org.  

Care in Action is the policy and advocacy home for women who care, working on behalf of more than two million domestic workers and care workers across America. Among the fastest-growing sectors in our economy, domestic workers are also among the most vulnerable and undervalued. As a mostly women and majority women of color workforce, this growing constituency consistently and overwhelmingly supports progressive values in American political life. Learn more at www.careinaction.us.