Rep. Michael Nelson, DFL-Brooklyn Park, and Sen. Chris Eaton, DFL-Brooklyn Center, will carry legislation that would allow thousands of home-care workers to seek union representation.
The proposal would apply to personal care assistants who are hired directly by the individuals for whom they provide care. The Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which wants to organize the workers, estimates that 15,000 to 20,000 individuals could potentially be affected by the change in law. The workers are paid entirely with state funds.
SEIU held a rally in the Capitol rotunda on Wednesday to kick off the legislative push. Gov. Mark Dayton and House Speaker Paul Thissen both addressed the crowd and voiced support for the union-backed legislation.
“The fact is home care workers in this state aren’t paid a competitive wage,” Thissen said.