To the editor:
As a handicapped person, I'm very concerned about Proposal 4. This constitutional amendment is being portrayed by certain "special interest groups" as something to help people, like myself, get safe reliable home care aids. If that was only true. This amendment would force everyone who works as a home care worker care into a union, including caregivers who are family members. These workers won't even get the opportunity to vote whether or not they want to be unionized.
This is a $6 million money grab by the unions taking the dollars that should be paid to caregivers and instead lining the pockets of union bosses.
The claim that Proposal 4 will require background checks seems like a good idea, but in reality, it isn't really that necessary because agencies are already doing this. They do it to protect themselves. In the 12 years since my injury, I've yet to come across an agency that does not do this. If you think this should be a law, fine. Let's pass a law, not an irreversible constitutional amendment.
The amendment also claims it will increase caregivers' wages. How much of that wage increase will be taken to cover union dues? How in the world will they negotiate a contract, given the varied working conditions and assignments that caregivers have. Will they strike? That will do wonders for people who rely on them to help get them get out of bed, shower and assist with other activities of daily living.
Explain to elderly or handicapped folks that they won't be fed while their home care worker is forced to walk a picket line, one that they didn't even vote to authorize. I'm sure they'll understand.
In regard to the pay issue, I pay for my home care out of pocket, as many others do. I already pay much more than the $8 an hour the ads claim. What if the union forces wages to increase so much that I can't afford care for the week? I guess people don't have to eat every day.
Remember, folks, unions are businesses too.
The relationships I have with my home care workers are very special; these caring individuals become part of the family. Please don't put the union between me and my caregiver. Vote no on Proposal 4.