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Home-Care Providers Gain, But at What Cost?


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Nearly 2 million workers in the home-healthcare industry now are covered by minimum-wage and overtime rules, after the U.S. Labor Department this week handed down new requirements.

Labor Secretary Tom Perez called the change long overdue for “skilled, capable and very well-trained” workers in the industry. “Today’s home-care workers are lumped into the same category as teenage baby sitters when it comes to how much they make. This is wrong, and this is unfair.”

Emma Dickison, president of Home Helpers, a franchisor of home health services, was one of many industry execs who had lobbied heavily against the changes, especially about overtime.

Her company, like many in the industry, already pays well above minimum wage in order to compete, she told Franchise Times late last year. But the overtime mandate from the federal government will ultimately hit the customer. “It’s not a major threat, but it will have an impact. It will be on the backs of the clients,” she said, because companies will pass the costs along.

 Jeff Salter, founder and CEO of Caring Senior Service, had argued along the same lines. “There’s a huge economic impact on the actual caregivers in this,” Salter said, because many workers depend on “five or more 12-hour shifts” to make ends meet. Providers will likely limit hours for workers rather than pay overtime.

The new rules take effect on Jan 1, 2015.

 

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The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Tom KaiserTom Kaiser is associate editor of Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3209, or send story ideas to tkaiser@franchisetimes.com.
 
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is editor-in-chief of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
 
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is staff writer at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
 
Mary Jo LarsonLaura Michaels is managing editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
 
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at
 twitter.com/mlarson1011.
 
Nancy WeingartnerNancy Weingartner is editor-at-large of Franchise Times magazine and the editor of the Food On Demand media project. You can reach her at 612-767-3200 or at nancyw@franchisetimes.com.
Follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nanweingartner.
 

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