In a Move to Help More Families to Receive Respite Care, Assembly Unanimously Passes AB 1006 (McKinnor)

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Mike Roth, 916.813.1554
Maria Elena Jauregui, Spanish-language, 818.355.5291
May 30, 2023
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SACRAMENTO – SEIU California members applauded the State Assembly’s unanimous passage of AB 1006 (McKinnor), a bill to make respite care more accessible to Californians who care for family members with developmental disabilities by creating a respite care registry and referral service. 

Arnulfo De La Cruz, President of SEIU Local 2015 California, stated:

“Family members who care for a child or adult who needs constant attention desperately need a break. California recognizes this need for respite care, but too many families can’t access it, because finding a caregiver who fits their needs can be extremely difficult. 

“At the same time, for respite caregivers, staying in the profession is difficult because it is a struggle to get enough hours of work to survive. With AB 1006, we can take a huge step toward solving both sides of this problem: more families will be able to get the help they need, and more caregivers will be able to stay in the profession.”

Rachel Gonzalez, a caregiver for her developmentally disabled daughter in Sacramento County, stated:

“I’m currently allotted 120 hours of respite per month, which averages out to about 4 hours per day. Sarah can only come once per week for 3 hours so that’s about 12 hours per month, 10% of my allotment. So far, she’s the only respite provider I’ve only been able to find. And they’ll base next year’s total allowed respite hours on this year’s average, which means I’ll likely lose 90% of my allotted hours simply because I can’t find anyone to do the work. And there’s nothing I can do about it. As a single mom, it can be very isolating and difficult to provide 24-hour care. I need help and support. I need respite. All family care providers need respite.”

AB 1006 was introduced this year, after a State Audit in 2022 found serious gaps in this critical part of our care system, concluding that, “DDS has not adequately reduced barriers to some families’ use of the respite services that they were authorized to receive.”

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