Healthcare workers seek promised raise

ILLINOIS (WCIA) -- Home healthcare workers are suing the state claiming the Rauner administration hasn't given them their raise. They were supposed to get one in the latest state budget which just passed.

SEIU home care workers were supposed to see a 48-cent raise in their paychecks. However, the governor argues, since there are still ongoing negotiations with the union, a wage increase should be discussed in person, not mandated by legislation.

Since Rauner took office, he's been butting heads with the union trying to hash out a new contract. Rauner says he's willing to meet and talk, but argues, under the Public Labor Relations Act, raises and wages need to be discussed in collective bargaining meetings.

Those who receive the service says workers deserve a raise. They provide care under the Home Service Program which helps those with disabilities in their homes.

They're currently paid $13/hour, which the lawsuit alleges is the lowest hourly wage paid to any state employee. There are about 28,000 personal assistants in the home care program who are demanding the raise.

The union and Rauner's administration have been in negotiations since the contract expired in June 2015.


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