On December 15th, 2011, home care worker and NDWA member Thelma Reta stood next to the President of the United States as he announced proposed changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act which would extend basic rights like minimum wage and overtime pay to 1.8 million home care workers nation-wide.
The Department of Labor is taking public comments on these changes until March 12, and people across America are standing up for home care workers by making public comments in support of the new rules. Will you join them?
Thelma is a member of the Caring Across Generations Campaign, a national campaign for quality care jobs and support for families and individuals who receive care.
“I am by nature a compassionate person. I always imagine that the person I’m taking care of is one who is close to me like my mother or father. And then I provide the kind of care I would want them to have.”
As a home care worker, Thelma has no right to earn minimum wage or overtime pay. In one job Thelma remembers, “I worked 16 hours a day waking up at 6:00am in the morning and worked until at night. It was a very tiring, demanding job. That means I was getting paid only $2.18 per hour. This just isn’t fair, but under the Federal law right now this is legal. The work I do is important and I deserve a minimum wage protection just like all other workers.”
Until March 12th, we have an historic opportunity to make a difference in the lives of home care workers and the people they support! Please make a comment to the Department of Labor today in support of the proposed changes for home care workers like Thelma.
Making a comment is easy and just takes a minute, but it will make a difference for millions of Americans for a lifetime. Of all the comments that we’ve seen so far, I think this comment, by Micheal from Bandon, OR, really sums up what the Caring Across Generations campaign is about: “Treat all workers fair. Keep the love in your heart.”
Like Micheal you don’t have to make a detailed comment on the policy — just write from your heart.
To learn more about the proposed regulations, make a formal comment to the DoL, and to let us know that you've submitted your story, visit the Caring Across Generations Action Center:
Thank you for standing with us for home care workers and the people they support,
Ai-jen Poo, Director,
National Domestic Workers Alliance
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