JBC approves $15 minimum wage for Colorado’s direct care workers.

Direct care workers funded with any state dollars working in-home and community-based settings will earn a minimum wage of $15 per hour starting next year.

The state Joint Budget Committee on Tuesday afternoon approved the wage hike, scheduled to go into effect on Jan. 1, by a vote of 5-1, according to a news release from Gov. Jared Polis.

The Polis administration and the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing forwarded and supported the plan, the release said.

The wage increase will benefit workers who “provide the vast majority of hands-on care to older adults and individuals with disabilities within our state, including personal care workers, homemakers, direct support professionals, and others,” according to the release.

The Medicaid rate increase needed to achieve this will be initially funded through federal American Rescue Plan Act funds dedicated to Home and Community-Based Services.

“Every Coloradan should be able to live and enjoy the Colorado we love and I’m proud that we’re taking care of those who take care of our loved ones,” Polis said in the release. “Colorado has one of the fastest-growing aging populations in the country so making sure we can hire and retain caregivers is important for today and for years to come. In Colorado, we value our workers so I fully support moving to a $15 minimum wage for caregivers.”

Source: Read Full Article