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POSTPONED: Day of Action for Direct Support Professional Wages

Please see this blog post for the rescheduled date.

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The Autism Society of North Carolina and a coalition of groups across Intellectual and Developmental Disability (IDD), aging, and home and community-based health services will be rallying at the General Assembly on May 19 in support of increased wages for direct support professionals (DSPs).

NOTE, 5/18: The Day of Action on May 19 has been postponed due to the gas shortage. We will announce a new date as soon as possible.

 

After our decade of advocacy for increased access to services, we expect to see more waiver slots in the upcoming state budget, but access to waivers must go hand in hand with competitive wages for direct care staff – or there will be no one to provide the service. 

HB 914 Support Our Direct Care Workforce would increase the wages of direct support staff across a variety of Medicaid services including Innovations and other home and community-based waivers, personal care services, ICFs, home health, nursing homes and other behavioral health residential facilities. Medicaid providers would be required to certify that 80% of the increase in provider rates would go directly to increasing DSP wages. This increased rate is intended to make sure that people who qualify for services have the direct support workforce they need. Increased rates mean providers can pay competitive wages, retain experienced DSPs, and people with autism do not go without DSP staff.

Read more about this issue and our coalition.

 

Advocate for services and competitive wages!

Participate in Person: Come to the NC General Assembly and talk with legislators to advocate for waivers and increased DSP wages. RESCHEDULED DATE COMING SOON

  • Call your legislators’ offices and ask for an appointment on Wednesday, May 19. NEW DATE COMING SOON 
  • Can’t get an appointment? Find the rally table across table on the Halifax Mall between the legislative building and the legislative office building, pick up a copy of the talking points, and drop them off at legislators’ offices.
  • Please let Jennifer Mahan know if you plan to attend in person by emailing jmahan@autismsociety-nc.org or calling 919-865-5068.

 

Participate from Home: If you can’t come to Raleigh or participate in person, make your voice heard on this issue. Legislators need to hear about autism, the need for services, and the need for a strong direct support workforce. If you have services, you can explain the importance of high-quality, consistent, caring staff and your support for HB 914. If you do not have services, talk about what it would mean for you get them. You can share this message several ways:

  • Email your legislators. Prepare a short statement using our Advocacy Tips Sheet or Advocacy 101 Toolkit.
  • Record a short video telling your story and post the video on your social media accounts. Tag your elected officials and the Autism Society of North Carolina so that we can re-post.
  • Contact your elected officials on social media, expressing your support of HB 914 with the hashtag #invisibleheroes.

 

The NCGA website will help you identify who represents you. Be sure to check the circles at the top of the map for “NC House” and “NC Senate” to see who represents you in the NC General Assembly.

If you plan to visit the NC General Assembly, please check out this guide for information on parking and visiting the building. Note that there are security checkpoints at building entrances: please be prepared to have belongings scanned/checked and to wait as people go through metal detector scans.

If you want more information about how to help, contact Jennifer Mahan, ASNC Director of Public Policy, at jmahan@autismsociety-nc.org. You can also sign up for our Policy Pulse emails.

 

 

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