Report may boost Minn. unionizing effortby Tim Pugmire, Minnesota Public Radio
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Efforts to unionize government-subsidized personal care assistants in Minnesota are getting some help from a national advocacy group.
The New York-based Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute released a report on Friday that highlighted the high turnover rate in the broader direct-care work force, due in large part to low wages. It also warns that the growing demand for home health care cannot be met under current conditions. The Service Employees International Union paid for the research.
During a news conference, DFL Rep. Tina Liebling of Rochester said a union could help address the problems outlined in the report.
"I certainly believe that when people are organized, when they are able to bargain collectively, that it lifts their standard of living and that that is good for all of us," Liebling said. "So I can certainly see this as one path."
Personal care assistants need legislation passed to allow them to organize. Liebling said she is not directly involved in creating that legislation.
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