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In-Home Caregivers Join in 'March' and Launch Campaign to Stop Governor's Cuts

Saturday, March 6, 2010 General News J E 4
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LOS ANGELES, March 5 Today, 500 members of SEIU ULTCW (United Long Term Care Workers' Union) joined a coalition of labor, business, education, and faith groups at a massive rally in downtown Los Angeles to kickoff a 48-day "March for California's Future" and to launch their campaign to fight the Governor's draconian cuts to the state's in-home care program (In-Home Supportive Services).

"Protecting California includes protecting the state's in-home care program," said Laphonza Butler, President-Elect of SEIU ULTCW. "Eliminating the state's cost-effective in-home care program would result in over 750,000 Californians either losing the only care they receive or their job as a caregiver. California's seniors and disabled residents and those who care for them deserve better - California deserves better. That's why these cuts must be stopped!"

If the Governor's proposed budget cuts to the in-home care program were to take place, more than 426,000 low-income seniors and disabled citizens would lose the vital services they rely on to remain safely in their homes and over 328,000 in-home caregivers would lose their jobs - placing California's unemployment rate at nearly 14%.

"The Governor is supposed to protect the residents of California - not attack us," stated Louis James, member of ULTCW and an in-home caregiver providing care to his wife who suffers from MS. "Without in-home care, I'm not able to take care of my wife who needs constant supervision. Without this lifeline program what would happen to her...what would happen to us?"

In Los Angeles County alone, the Governor's cuts to in-home care would impact nearly 300,000 County residents: 156,600 low-income seniors and disabled residents would lose their care and 120,450 in-home caregivers would lose their jobs - placing the Los Angeles County unemployment rate at 14.6%.

"In-home care is the most cost-effective way to care for our growing senior population - it saves taxpayers millions of dollars annually while saving lives," said ULTCW member and in-home caregiver Maria Alvarez. "Simply put, cutting in-home care doesn't help California's future - it only hurts California's future."

SEIU ULTCW represents 180,000 long term caregivers (in-home caregivers and nursing home workers) throughout California and is a leading advocate for low-income seniors and disabled citizens who rely on in-home care to live safely at home.

SOURCE SEIU ULTCW
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