June 25, 2021

Duckworth, Durbin Join Casey to Introduce Legislation to Expand Access to Home Care and Community Supports for Seniors and People with Disabilities, Invest in Home Care Workers


[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA), Chairman of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging, Ron Wyden (D-OR), Chairman of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee and Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), to introduce the Better Care Better Jobs Act, a key element of President Biden’s American Jobs Plan. This legislation would make a historic investment in home and community-based services by strengthening and expanding access to quality home care services and lifting up the caregiving workforce that provides them.

“Seniors and people with disabilities—who have already been disproportionately impacted by this deadly pandemic—need to know they can rely on high quality long-term home care and services that help them lead full and independent lives,” said Duckworth. “I’m proud to join my colleagues to help introduce this important bill that’s part of President Biden’s American Jobs Plan. This bill would expand home and community-based services while also investing in caregivers—largely women and people of color—to ensure they are paid fair wages and treated like the essential workers that they are.”

“The home care workforce has proven how important their work is time and time again, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. For seniors and Americans with disabilities, home caregivers have made all the difference,” said Durbin. “I'm proud to support the Better Care Better Jobs Act to invest in home care services and fortify the workforce, ensuring caregivers are paid a fair, living wage and to offer more choices and independence for people with disabilities and older Americans.”

“For millions of families, and especially for women, home and community-based services are a bridge to work and a bridge to economic security. The Better Care Better Jobs Act would not only enable more older adults and people with disabilities to remain in their homes, stay active in their communities and lead independent lives, it would also create jobs and lead to higher wages for care workers, who are predominantly women and people of color. This legislation is critical to advancing equity, spurring economic recovery and improving quality of life for older adults and people with disabilities,” said Chairman Casey.

The Better Care Better Jobs Act would provide states with enhanced Medicaid funding for home and community-bases services if they carry out certain activities that will support expanding access to these services and strengthen the workforce providing them. It would also provide funding to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to carry out the bill’s programs and conduct oversight.

Along with Duckworth, Durbin, Casey, Wyden and Schumer, U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) also helped introduce this legislation. U.S. Representatives Debbie Dingell (D-MI-12), Frank Pallone (D-NJ-6), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-9) and Doris Matsui (D-CA-6) introduced the House companion.

The full list of original Senate cosponsors of the Better Care Better Jobs Act are: U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Patty Murray (D-WA), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Angus King (I-ME), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Pat Leahy (D-VT), Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Ed Markey (D-MA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Gary Peters (D-MI), Jack Reed (D-RI), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Tina Smith (D-MN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).

Read more about the Better Care Better Jobs Act here.