Calaveras County Reaches Tentative Contract With Care Providers Union
Calaveras County, CA – After nearly 14 years without a contract, Calaveras County has reached a tentative agreement with care providers, as the nation reports that roughly 10,000 people turn 65 every day, and that number is expected to grow in the coming years.
The In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) providers of SEIU Local 2015, the nation’s largest long-term care union representing nearly 450,000 caregivers across California, last week reached a tentative agreement for a new union contract with the Calaveras County Board of Supervisors. This will be the first agreement reached since 2010 and will raise standards for the over 500 Calaveras County IHSS workers who provide essential care to older adults and people with disabilities.
“This agreement in Calaveras County marks significant changes for workers in the county and raises standards for IHSS workers all over California,” said Arnulfo De La Cruz, President of SEIU 2015. “For the first time since 2010, IHSS providers in Calaveras have gained benefits, which include county-provided PPE and an investment in their training. This agreement will help further the future of care, where all IHSS workers are able to maintain their livelihood while providing essential care to their recipients.”
The agreement includes a wage increase to $16.99 immediately, with a path to earning $17.99 by 2025.
“I just lost my second job in January, and I have had to really juggle paying my bills since then, my basic bills, and it leaves no extra money at all,” said Jodi Acevedo, who has been an IHSS provider since 2017. “This wage increase will alleviate some of that financial burden for me and my son and for all IHSS providers in Calaveras County.”
The agreement’s total wage and benefit package amounts to a $1.50 supplement for the first time in 14 years and expands workers’ health plan eligibility to providers working 60 hours or more a month.
“I was really happy about the expanded eligibility for the health plan. When I first took on caregiving, I was always just a little bit short for the hours needed for the health plan, and that was a struggle for me for years. New providers will have a little bit more grace on that part,” said Charles Rangel, an IHSS provider since 2012. “This agreement is a good step in the right direction for making a better living for IHSS providers in Calaveras County.”
Union members were able to cast their vote in person on the agreement on Wednesday, February 7. Voting can also be done online through February 23rd. The Board of Supervisors will vote on February 27th.