USA: DC Court of Appeals rulled that home care workers are entitled to basic minimum wage
Message from Ai-jen Poo, NDWA Director:
Excluded by racism, kept in poverty, and delayed from their rights by profit-seeking industry groups — homecare workers have finally won!
I love my work, but I don’t love the low pay. I have earned nine dollars an hour for six years. I've worked anywhere from 45 to 70 hours a week and was never paid overtime. Earning so little means I don’t have the time or money to do much with my kids, and that breaks my heart. D’Rosa Davis, Atlanta home care worker, on what today's victory will mean for her
For over 75 years, the mostly immigrant women and women of color who care for seniors and people with disabilities across our country have been excluded from the most basic federal labor protections. Those exclusions were originally demanded by racist legislators who refused to allow equal wages for Black workers. Today — thanks to years of dedicated organizing by workers and their allies — that begins to change.
This morning, a federal court ruled that the Department of Labor had full authority to extend basic wage protections like overtime pay and a minimum wage to over two million home care workers.
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Are you on Twitter? Click on this tweet to share it: Big news for 2 million #homecare workers nationwide: federal court rules in favor of overtime & min wage! #FairPay4HomeCare @domesticworkers
Multimillion dollar corporate home care associations sued the Department of Labor over the new rules last year. With today’s ruling, the court made it clear that home care workers are just that — workers — and they deserve the same protections on the job that all workers do.
The ruling also rights a racist historical legacy: the exclusion of mostly Black Southern home care workers from labor protections that were put in place in the 1930s. The results have been devastating, from industry-wide poverty to a high turnover rate that leaves workers and the people who count on them vulnerable.
I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to all home care workers and everyone who had a role in winning this crucial victory. At every step your courageous organizing has led the way. Congratulations as well to all the families and consumers who rely on consistent, quality care.
Now it’s up to states to swiftly implement the rule in a way that benefits workers and consumers. There’s still a lot of work ahead of us! Stay tuned as we share ways to keep taking action for home care workers, and to take today’s victory from the courts to touch the lives of workers like D’Rosa and her family.
P.S. If you're looking to learn more specifics about the new rules, check out this fact sheet.
Story Type: News