Celebrating and Supporting the Country’s Care Economy
Direct Service Professionals
Join me in celebrating direct support professionals (DSP) this month. DSPs have been through a lot this past year. Through a global pandemic, natural disasters, social unrest, and personal distress, they have been the heroes keeping those served by the provider community safe.
DSPs are some of the most underpaid professionals in our community. Some service providers are shuffling finances to offer wage increases in order to hire workers instead of waiting for government support. However, while being paid living wages will help to slow the exodus of the vital caregiving workforce, it will not be enough to address the housing instability that they and those they directly serve face across the nation.
This month, Scioto Properties Chief Investment Officer Dave Opalek and I had the honor of meeting with HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge to discuss housing instability across our industry and how companies like Scioto Properties can increase affordable permanent supportive living development. Individual rental assistance through the Section 811 program for adults experiencing I/DD would reinforce the creation of quality affordable housing.
Our industry must support the well-being of our direct support professionals, who are the heart of the country’s care economy, as well as the people they serve. Because of their commitment, adults with I/DD are living more independently and are engaging in meaningful activities of their choosing.
Supporting funding for the Section 811 program helps the entire industry.