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Zbur Bill to Eliminate Barriers to In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Advances to Senate

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO, CA — Assembly Democratic Caucus Chair Rick Chavez Zbur (D-Hollywood) has announced that the California State Assembly has passed AB 2704, a bill to eliminate barriers to In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS), and now advances to the California State Senate. This bill, sponsored by United Domestic Workers/American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Local 3930, alleviates the financial burden on IHSS providers by shifting the responsibility of covering the costs associated with criminal background checks from the individual providers to the Department of Justice.

"The IHSS program is a vital lifeline for over 740,000 Californians, providing essential domestic long-term care services, and ensuring that low-income Californians can remain safely in their homes, receive life-saving care, and age with dignity," said Assemblymember Rick Chavez Zbur. "It is an unjust practice - and a barrier to providing needed care - to unfairly burden workers who will be making just over minimum wage with the costs of these background checks. Promoting growth in this vital workforce and eliminating those financial barriers should be a priority for the state of California."

"As co-sponsors of Assembly Bill 2704, UDW is proud to see the bill has made its way off of the Assembly floor with legislators from both sides of the aisle recognizing the need to build up the home care provider workforce to care for the growing population of IHSS recipients," said Doug Moore, Executive Director of UDW/AFSCME Local 3930. "We know there is still work to do, but we're trending in the right direction. We look forward to working with the Senate to ensure that California upholds its duty to our most vulnerable populations by reducing financial barriers for future IHSS workers looking to provide life-saving care for these communities."

"The In-Home Supportive Services program is the backbone of California's long-term care system and provides the state a cost-effective alternative to institutional care," says Alia Griffing, Political and Legislative Director for the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees. "With the current supply of care providers unable to meet the demand, AB 2704 is a common-sense solution to encourage and attract more providers to provide vital home care services for our aging family members and disabled loved ones so that they can live independently and with dignity."

IHSS providers, including registry providers, play a crucial role in supporting home-bound aged, blind, and disabled individuals in California. The current law, Section 12305.86 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, mandates providers to pay for their criminal background checks, creating an inequitable burden on low-income workers. These background checks can amount to as much as $75, the equivalent of working 4 -6 hours as an IHSS worker for free. AB 2704 proposed an amendment to the Welfare and Institutions Code to shift the responsibility of covering criminal background check costs to the Department of Justice and away from job applicants.

Assemblymember Rick Chavez Zbur serves as the Democratic Caucus Chair for the California State Assembly and represents the 51st Assembly District, which includes Universal City, Hollywood, Hancock Park, West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Westwood, West Los Angeles, Santa Monica, and other portions of Los Angeles.

CONTACT: Vienna Montague, (916) 319-2051,