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HCA Op-ed in Times Union on Wage Issue, Home Care Funding

Today, HCA President Joanne Cunningham had an op-ed published in the Albany Times Union where she outlined one of HCA’s major positions and concerns – that the Governor’s proposed $15 wage mandate must be funded and not draw energy or focus at a time when other home care program and reimbursement needs must be addressed in the state budget.

She stressed the enormous impact of the mandate – a stunning $1.9 billion for home care – but noted that the industry is “troubled” by the fact that “this new mandate draws focus away from home care needs long left unaddressed.” HCA “has long advocated for improved reimbursement to support home care worker wages and benefits,” she wrote. “We agree that staff should be compensated in measure to the valued work they do.” However, “funding for this wage mandate is vital,” and “past history gives us pause” when it comes to the state’s past promises to cover unfunded labor mandates.