Pennsylvania Homecare Association

Court Throws Out Bargaining Rights For Home Care Workers

Sep 25, 2016
Orlin Wagner / AP

A Pennsylvania court is putting an end to a program established by Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf that the judges said improperly granted union rights to home care workers who look after elderly and disabled people.

 

Commonwealth Court ruled 4-to-1 Thursday in favor of plaintiffs who challenged an executive order Wolf issued in February 2015.

Gov. Tom Wolf has said he just wants to give in-home care workers a voice.

Under a partial injunction issued Thursday, that voice would be somewhat muted.

Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini has ruled that direct care workers can still elect a representative, who can still meet with state officials about things like standards, training, working conditions. But Pellegrini barred the parties from putting any agreement in writing.

Two health care associations and people who receive and provide in-home aid have sued Gov. Tom Wolf over an executive order they say paves the way for unionized caregivers.

The challenges filed in Commonwealth Court this week take issue with a February executive order allowing direct care workers paid through state programs to recognize a representative who will then meet with state officials to discuss things compensation, training and other standards.

Study Shows PA's Home Health Care Industry Growing

Nov 11, 2013

A study of the economic impact of Pennsylvania's home health care industry shows the sector has a big financial footprint and is expected to grow larger yet.

The report was commissioned by the Pennsylvania Homecare Association, representing about 500 homecare and hospice providers. It finds the home-based health care industry contributed to nearly $22 billion in economic activity in the commonwealth last year, putting the sector just behind the state's medical schools and nursing homes in spending and jobs supported.