So if you have read any of my previous posts, you most likely know my opinions on overtime pay for direct care staff. Direct care staff go by a number of different names depending on where you are from but the people I’m referring to are the people who, for myself, take care of people in their home. Again, for myself and my own personal needs, these needs range from toiletry needs, feeding, dressing, among other daily tasks. There are two common types of people who do this kind of work, when payment is involved, people either work for agencies or they are independent providers. Continue reading
Back in March of this year I wrote an article about the Obama administration’s failed attempt to enforce wage protection for home health care workers. You can read the article by clicking here. I will quickly summarize what that was about. Some people with disabilities have home health care workers come into their homes to help with various things such as dressing, feeding, bathing and other tasks that are needed. These workers a lot of times work for agencies that bill a funding source and then pay the worker out of that. When the funding source is the government, such as Medicaid, the agencies receive a set, non-negotiable rate. My agency currently gets an hourly rate of $19.04/hr. and pays their employees out of that. The more the agency pays the employee, the lower their profit margin goes. Due to the classification of this type of employee, agencies were not required to pay the employee minimum wage nor overtime compensation and this is what the administration tried to change back in January of this year but got struck down. Problem is, they decided to appeal the ruling and this time the court ruled in favor of the administration. If you haven’t read the previous article I wrote on this, I would encourage you to do so as it will explain some of the impact it will have on the agencies, employees and even the consumers that are being taken care of.
I read an article today that deeply disturbs me about the Obama administration newest attempts to control guns. There’s no surprise here in regards to how he and his administration feels about guns, if there was a magic button that destroyed and banned all guns, it would been pressed about two seconds after his first inauguration. Of course, he would have kept them around him for his protection. But this new attempt is just downright scary. The administration is now trying to get a new regulation enacted that would prevent certain people who receives Social Security from owning guns. Let me explain.
So the argument over minimum wage has for a while driven me nuts and I’m finally getting to discuss it. The first thing we need to do is figure what exactly minimum wage is suppose to accomplish. To me, this mandatory minimum wage is very unneeded in today’s world and I say this because there is a very small percentage of the workforce who is making minimum wage. According to a study done by the Pew Research Center and published in September of 2014, only about 4.3% of the workforce makes minimum wage or below (there are certain industries/jobs where the employer is allowed to pay their employees less than minimum wage). To me, the intent of a minimum wage would be to insure that the employer is paying a fair amount because companies have the perceived reputation of paying as little as possible. However, when such a small portion of workers are making minimum wage or less, you have to wonder about this so-called reputation. If a company has no legal obligation to pay more than this, why do they? Continue reading
There is a trend happening in an area of Minnesota of going after businesses whose buildings are not accessible according to the American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) laws. Now this topic hits home on two different fronts for me. The first hit against me on this is the fact that I am in a wheelchair and I remember when I was a kid, we would have to check whether a place was wheelchair accessible before going. Now it’s not even a thought to me about checking to see if a building is accessible, I just go and assume the place is accessible and I will admit that it is really nice! Whether this should be the way, whether everywhere should be required by law to be accessible is what I am going to debate here.
There has been a push lately by the Obama administration to basically screw up the personal care that people with disabilities, like myself, receive. Some people with disabilities have people come into their homes in order to help with a wide range of things. Myself, I need help with things such as dressing, eating, bathing, toilet, transportation along with other things. I love my staff (people who perform the job go by many names, around here they are call staff)! You get a very unique and humbling perspective when you are hungry but have to wait for somebody to come into your home and have them feed you your food that has been sitting in your kitchen the whole time you were hungry. Or having to go to the bathroom and having to wait to use your own bathroom until someone comes into work. My staff is quite literally my life line!
Back in February of 2014, President Obama once again went around congress and with an executive order started the process to raise minimum wage for federal contractors to $10.10/hour. Let’s dismiss the argument as to whether this was a smart move or not. Let’s even forget about the fact that the President continuously has gone around congress, rendering the idea of check and balance nothing more than an idea. Remember from grade school the government is made up of three branches and are setup in a fashion so each branch checks the other two branches. Continue reading