The Homecare and Personal Support bargaining team has secured a win for SEIU 503-represented workers concerning our November grievance filed against DHS about the issue of late and partial pay.
Homecare and Personal Support Workers have been dealing with pay issues for years with no real resolution. As far back as 2019, DHS admitted to a reporter from the Statesman Journal that they had issued nearly 10,000 late payments to care providers the previous year alone. Yet the problem has continued. The launch of a new time capture system only made these issues worse. Many caregivers have been paid late, incorrectly or not at all. This is unacceptable.
Homecare union leaders have met multiple times with DHS leadership over the past several weeks to demand that the State take accountability in the pay crisis that homecare workers are facing. Care providers sent letters to lawmakers and DHS leaders, rallied outside DHS offices, and flew banners and signs from highway overpasses across the state, informing the public and demanding that care providers be paid on time, every time.
Now, finally, we have victory! The results of all those efforts are a 1.3 million dollar settlement by DHS to make affected homecare workers whole.
Here is a summary of what we have won:
- $150 per incident of partial pay for any provider affected since pilot rolled out on August 1, 2021 through the pay period ending on March 12, 2022.
- Beginning with pay period March 13, 2022, the State agrees that current contract language for late pay will include instances of partial pay if the State is at fault.
- The settlement requires the Oregon Home Care Commission (OHCC) to investigate late pay complaints within 30 days.
PLEASE NOTE: Late payment processing will take time. Payments could take several weeks/months. If you don’t receive a payment by Friday, May 27 please call the SEIU Local 503 Member Assistance Center (MAC). We anticipate high call volumes, so please wait to contact the MAC until after May 27. We will follow up with DHS and as soon as we know the processing date we’ll share that information with you.
“This was a real win for thousands of workers damaged by DHS’s failed provider time capture system (PTC) roll-out. It’s an affirmation of the importance of having collective Union power! We will finally be made whole. Thank you to all the SEIU 503 members who participated in the fight that brought us this victory.” — Rebecca Sandoval, President, Homecare Local 99
This victory would not have been possible without the hard work of our SEIU 503 Homecare local team, including chief stewards Nannette Carter-Jafri and Patty Falkenstein, Rebecca Sandoval (President), Joy’e Willman (Vice President) and Cristal Dejarnac, steward of record. Assisting were SEIU 503 staff members Keith Quick, Bargaining Coordinator, and Melissa Unger, Executive Director.
Should you have any questions please contact the SEIU 503 Member Assistance Center at 844-503-SEIU (7348).
Here are the settlement details:
- A Homecare Worker or Personal Care Attendant who has received a partial payment for the pay periods beginning on August 1, 2021, and ending on March 12, 2022, shall receive a late pay penalty payment of one hundred fifty dollars ($150.00) per incident. Payments will not be subject to tax withholding.The check stub shall provide at minimum, information about the reason for payment.
- The payment as provided for above will be paid to homecare workers and personal care attendants within ) sixty (60) days from the date of the signing of this Agreement. Homecare workers and personal care attendants will not be required to file a claim for the payment defined in 1. above.
- Effective with the pay period beginning March 13, 2022, partial payments which are determined to be a result of the Case Management Entity administrative error shall constitute a late payment fee in accordance with Article 8 of the Parties’ Collective Bargaining Agreement.
- For partial payments and other payment issues which occur after the period defined in 1. above, homecare workers and personal care attendants shall initiate claims for late pay penalty payment and resolution of any pay issue through the OHCC Customer Relations online service form. The OHCC shall verify the claim within thirty (30) calendar days. If the claim is not resolved in thirty (30) calendar days, the Parties can mutually agree to extend the time to resolve the issue. The form shall be developed jointly by the MAC and the OHCC. Until the form is developed the parties shall use the current process for pay issues. The OHCC shall share the form on their homepage, social media, text message, email, communicate to CMEs, payment remittance and every other normal channel of communications.
a. Homecare workers and personal care attendants without access to computers or smart devices may contact OHCC or the SEIU Member Assistance Center (MAC) by phone or email to submit a claim.
b. Late payment penalty fees will only apply to partial payments that are a result of an administrative error pursuant to Article 8.
- APD/OR PTC Team shall share with SEIU Member Assistance Center (MAC) reports which provide pending entries related data for each pay period within three (3) business days after the pay processing date.
- The State will collect data for ninety (90) days to further analyze the origin of the errors and determine short and long-term plans intended to eliminate these partial payment issues. The plans and analysis shall be presented to the Union at a quarterly meeting until such time that the partial payment issues are resolved.