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Daycare Workers Negotiate Pay Raise

by Hugh McQuaid | Jan 16, 2014 5:40pm
(8) Comments | Commenting has expired
Posted to: Labor

Photo Courtesy of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's Office

Daycare workers subsidized by government programs have negotiated four years of pay raises with the state following an executive action by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy in 2011 giving them a process to unionize.

Malloy issued two executive orders creating a path to unionization for both child care workers and personal care assistants. Both groups are private contractors who do not work for the state directly but whose pay is subsidized by state programs.

The legislature codified the orders and gave the groups the right to collectively bargain in 2012 over objections from opponents who claimed the process would force the workers to unionize. Both groups have voted to join unions.

The agreement Malloy announced Thursday was negotiated with CSEA/SEIU LOCAL 2001 and represents the first pay raise child care workers paid under the Care 4 Kids program have received in 12 years. The program helps pay for the child care of low and moderate income families

Under the agreement, licensed daycare workers will see their general rates increase 12 percent over four years. The pay of unlicensed workers will rise based on the recent hike in the minimum wage.

“This is another sign of our commitment to raise the level of quality in child care settings, and increase opportunities for young children to be in safe and healthy learning environments that encourage learning,” Malloy said in a statement. “By increasing wages and providing professional development opportunities for Care 4 Kids home-based family child care providers, we are investing in our children and those who care for them.”

CSEA President Patrice Peterson said the agreement is a shift in state policy which will help close Connecticut’s achievement gap by aiding low income children.

“These family child care providers are often the first teachers a child has outside their home. They provide care for children at all hours of the day and night for parents earning low wages,” she said.

The agreement will need to be approved by both the union members and sent to the legislature. About 5,000 daycare providers are members of the bargaining unit, according to a press release.

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(8) Comments

posted by: Mansfield2 | January 16, 2014  6:13pm

So tell me:  When a mentally disabled person who has only a small amount of support from the State gets told his 10 hours of support a week is now eight hours what does he do?  The worker gets to work fewer hours for the same money, the Union gets more members, the pols get some grateful voters and the person who this should be all about gets screwed.  Right?

Or do the powers that be in the General Assembly make the handicapped person whole by upping the allocation of support to each person by 12%?

The article talks about “child care providers” but there are a lot of other folks who receive support that will get hurt by this if the Leg doesn’t do anything to hold them harmless.

posted by: lkulmann | January 16, 2014  9:45pm

@mansfield…people with disabilities fall under the Department of Developmental Disabilities. They are funded by State and Federal funding. This Agency gets 1 billion dollars a year to provide the required entitlements for people with disabilities and the families who take care of them 24/7/365. That money gets incorrectly put in the general fund violating federal regulations and our family members see next to nothing for supports. The more you complain that you need assistance the more they take away…Its a money laundering scheme and it goes back many years. The ‘leadership’ in this State don’t invest in their non productive residents and feel that its a waste of money because there is no return on their investment. Its funny because I feel the exact same way about the money being paid to these 70yrs+ State employees that are clearly incompetent and a non productive residents as well. Those who advocate for the disabled need to collectively fight for whats theirs. I’m not clear what the fighting is about because the money is clearly appropriated to the appropriate agency. Why it doesn’t get there is the real issue? Check the DDS website for a family advocate group forming to attend to this very issue. The Social Workers hoard the money though and will tell you your family member is not entitled to assistance from DDS because they are not an entitlement Agency….They think the money is theirs…lol! Good luck getting the assistance that you ARE entitled to by Social Security and Disability laws. First we have to update 20-30 year old laws, second we have to train State workers to follow rules and third we’ve got to get the money into DDS and out of the General Fund so the politicians don’t grab it first.

posted by: justsayin | January 16, 2014  10:29pm

Raising the wage does not help the kids. It helps the worker and the union.

posted by: Jim in Mfg | January 16, 2014  11:15pm

Dannel P. Malloy appears to be the Governor for the public and private unions. He is not the chief manager representing taxpayers.

posted by: Stephen Mendelsohn | January 17, 2014  12:22am

This is an increase in the Care 4 Kids subsidy rate, NOT a pay raise as Governor Malloy and SEIU are spinning it. Family childcare providers are independent businesswomen who are free to charge whatever rate the market will bear for their services. The Care 4 Kids subsidy was never intended to cover the entire cost of childcare for low-income families. Smart providers understand this and that is why they oppose forced unionization.

Someone will have to pay for both the union dues and the increased subsidy. If the General Assembly fails to appropriate more money for Care 4 Kids, then the program will serve fewer low-income children, as has happened in other unionized states: http://www.childcareunioninfo.com/facts.html

“One accomplishment the unions were able to make in some states in which they reached a contract was to increase in subsidy rates. However, the subsidy rates are locked in, cuts to the program cannot be made by reducing rates; cutbacks must come from somewhere else. This has resulted in many families losing their assistance and forced some states to implement a waiting list for eligible families.”

posted by: lkulmann | January 17, 2014  2:43am

@just sayin…raising the wage helps the children indirectly. They don’t get the money. They get a caregiver that can make a living taking care of them. They get a caregiver that can miss a day of work and get a day paid off if they’re sick. They get a caregiver looking out the window distracted not knowing if they can afford to get their car fixed if they get in it and it doesn’t start up. They get a caregiver that can afford groceries and gas and maybe a night out at the movies with her own kids or her husband. They get a caregiver ready fresh and fully focused on teaching and caring for the kids because she knows she is okay financially. She is making enough to get by with a bit of dignity and that she matters at work in the community and as a team member helping kids by being a good solid role model. They get a caregiver that is well supported health wise because she can pay taxes out of her paycheck and contribute,,,there is so much more but I think you get the idea @justsayin- thats a lot of bang for a buck or two. No? You need to look in the opposite direction. The white collar criminals are the ones that are ripping off the taxpayers trying to live a lavish lifestyle off the taxpayers money. The working poor just need a hand. The caregivers should be going to school paid by the State to once and for all get off the State assistance. That is not happening because the stateworkers want their job so they keep the poor, poor so they have a job to come to in the morning

posted by: justsayin | January 17, 2014  12:40pm

lkulmann, a raise does bring certain advantages. In this case though it will not help the kids as the article states. Where does this money come from? As stated in other posts someone is going to loose. The problem with Malloy is he picks winners and losers usually based on votes.

posted by: Mansfield2 | January 17, 2014  12:59pm

@lkulmann:  I couldn’t agree more with you on the leakage of money from the State before any mentally disabled person gets any support.  And also the inhumane way they make families with elderly parents beg for support for their 50 something children.

Did you know that Aides privately hired by families to support these folks were included in the SEIU organizing campaign?  They got the same request to vote that the childcare people did.  So given the Department’s history what can one expect except a reduction in support?  The ball is now with the legislaure to make sure things don’t get worse.  A scary spot.