ANCOR News - 04.18.23

President Biden Signs Sweeping Executive Order Designed to Strengthen Caregiving Workforce

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Today, President Biden signed an Executive Order that includes “more than 50 directives to nearly every cabinet-level agency to expand access to affordable, high-quality care, and provide support for care workers and family caregivers.” The executive action was announced ahead of this afternoon’s event at the White House honoring family and professional caregivers, where ANCOR was represented by CEO Barbara Merrill.

Among the many provisions designed to strengthen the caregiving workforce more broadly, the executive action includes several directives that would have important implications for providers of intellectual and developmental disability (I/DD) services. In particular, the White House Fact Sheet—which cites data from ANCOR’s 2022 State of America’s Direct Support Workforce Crisis report—identifies directives aimed at enhancing job quality for direct care workers and stabilizing the fragile system of long-term supports and services for people with disabilities.

The announcement comes on the heels of the President’s declaration of April as National Care Worker Recognition Month, as well as the inclusion of $150 billion for Home and Community Based Services in the President’s FY 2024 budget proposal. ANCOR applauds these recent actions by the Biden administration and its ongoing commitment to strengthening the direct care workforce.

Furthermore, ANCOR is eager to collaborate with the Administration as it begins to operationalize the directives included in the Executive Order announced today. In particular, we look forward to engaging the Administration on rulemaking and guidance that strengthens the direct support workforce through meaningful investment and ongoing engagement to reverse decades of underinvestment in Medicaid funded I/DD services.

“Today’s announcement by the White House marks another in a long string of signals that the Biden administration is more committed than any other in history to the long-term sustainability of the caregiving workforce,” said Barbara Merrill, chief executive officer for ANCOR. “At the same time, we know that strong policymaking requires utmost attention to even the smallest of details. To that end, I am proud to offer ANCOR and its members as a resource to the Administration as we work together to put an end to too many years of inadequate investments in disability services.”

For more information about today’s announcement, we encourage readers to review the Fact Sheet published this morning by the White House.