connecticut group home, day program workers stage walkout for better pay
Across the US state of Connecticut, scores of group home and day program workers who provide care for people with disabilities in Medicaid-funded agencies are staging a massive walkout on Wednesday. The indefinite strike started around 06:00 local time.
At the heart of the chaos is a demand for better pay. The workers are seeking affordable healthcare and retirement support after years of service, in addition to a pathway to a $25 an hour minimum wage.
The workers staging the walkout said they have set out a proposal to set things in motion. They have made demands for an extra $400 million in the state budget in Medicaid funding for group homes and day programs across the state.
This Medicaid funding, which needs $200 million in state funds and an additional $200 million matched by the federal government, is expected to help bring both union as well as non-union group home workers in Connecticut out of poverty.
Rob Brill, the President of District 1199, highlighted: “This workforce needs help,” adding “there is the resource” and the elected officials have an affirmative obligation to get long-term care workers out of poverty and to pave the way for a moral budget.
In response, the state said it hoped the matter will be resolved soon, adding it cannot comment on the status of current contract negotiations between the union and private providers. All individuals affected by the massive walkout were contacted last week, according to the state.