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Capitol Correspondence - 12.05.23

Congressional Resolution Declares November as National Family Caregivers Month

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In a bipartisan effort, Members of Congress introduced a resolution in both the House and Senate last week designating November as National Family Caregivers Month to honor the invaluable contributions of the 53 million Americans who provide essential family care without compensation each year.

Representative Dwight Evans (D-PA), the lead sponsor of the House resolution, highlighted the significant role of family caregivers, who dedicate an average of about 24 hours per week to caregiving responsibilities. More than 60% of these caregivers also balance full- or part-time employment. Additionally, caregivers spend an average of over $7,200 annually out-of-pocket on caregiving expenses, with Hispanic/Latino and African American family caregivers facing the greatest financial strain.

Representative Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) emphasized the crucial role caregivers play in supporting individuals with disabilities, chronic illnesses, and seniors, particularly in states like Pennsylvania with a high aging population. Fitzpatrick joined the bipartisan effort to recognize the selfless contributions of caregivers across the nation.

Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Chair of the Senate Aging Committee, introduced the resolution in the Senate and also expressed his commitment to supporting the 53 million Americans serving as family caregivers and addressing the caregiving crisis in the country. Senator Casey has advocated for legislation to increase funding for home and community-based services and establish a national strategy on family caregiving.

The resolutions put forth by Congress encourage federal agencies, states, and private sector organizations to expeditiously implement the steps outlined in the 2022 National Strategy to Support Family Caregivers. Additionally, they urge investments in policies that support family caregivers, including economic tax credits, paid family and medical leave, respite care, home and community-based services, and access to quality health care.

of family caregivers, the resolution calls on the public to learn more about family caregiving and extend support to their loved ones and neighbors who are providing care. The bipartisan effort aims to bring attention to the challenges faced by family caregivers and advocates for meaningful policies to alleviate their burdens.