The State Budget must be signed by June 30. That means there are only 8 weeks left to influence lawmakers to include a $1.25 an hour increase for Direct Support Professionals in the Fiscal Year ’18 Budget. With that in mind, we need you to join us in taking to Twitter, this Tuesday, May 2, and make our message go viral.
We are targeting members of the Budget Committee who will have a big impact on what the final budget looks like.

Here’s what you can do:

tweet-tuesdaySend 3 Tweets: Copy the Tweets below and send them out from your Twitter account. This is a quick and easy way of connecting with legislators and their staff about this issue.

.@PaulASarlo #PayFair4DirectCare increase wages for DSPs by $1.25/hr in FY18 Budget
.@TonyBucco #PayFair4DirectCare increase wages for DSPs by $1.25/hr in FY18 Budget
.@DeclanOScanlon #PayFair4DirectCare increase wages for DSPs by $1.25/hr in FY18 Budget

Please send this alert to anyone else you believe may be interested in supporting our message and if you’re a community provider organization, please forward this alert to your Direct Support Professional staff members and encourage them to participate.

Looking to Compose Your Own Tweet?

Here are some additional points you may want to use. Just be sure to include our Hashtag #PayFair4DirectCare in all your tweets and remember, Twitter will only let you send messages of 140 characters or less!

• Direct Support Professionals provide critical tasks that allow for community integration but the average starting salary for a DSP is only $10.50 an hour.

• Because of this low wage, provider organizations and families who seek to hire DSPs to care for their loved ones, have a very hard time finding and retaining staff. Service provider agencies report a remarkably high turnover rate of approximately 44% and staff vacancy rates of more than 20%.

• If nothing is done to address this issue, the workforce shortage will continue and individuals with I/DD may lose the very important services they rely on.

Don’t Have a Twitter Account?

If you don’t have a Twitter account, but want to support our advocacy, you can still make your voice heard. Call the offices for the Senate and Assembly Budget Chairmen and let them know you support a $1.25 an hour increase for all DSPs assisting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the FY18 Budget. That’s all you have to say!

Contact Information:
• Senator Sarlo (201) 804-8118
• Assemblyman Schaer (973) 249-3665

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