As we all adapt to manage the COVID-19 outbreak, it can be hard to keep up with the news and what you should do to keep yourself, your client, and your community protected. I want to share the latest news with you and the resources our union, SEIU 775, has put in place for our caregivers and community to help you navigate these changes.
Today at 5:30 p.m., Governor Jay Inslee announced a Stay Home order in Washington state to help contain the outbreak of COVID-19 starting immediately for a minimum of two weeks. You can read the full announcement here or watch it on TVW. Here’s what you need to know.
We have confirmed with the State that home care workers are considered “essential providers” and are allowed to continue to work and provide care for their vulnerable clients.
You can find precautions that caregivers should take on our website at seiu775.org/covid19, and we expect additional guidance over the next few days from DSHS about tasks that caregivers can and will be encouraged to do remotely, when possible – such as over the phone – to limit how much you have to leave home and reduce contact while continuing to support your client.
If you are at greater risk yourself – such as over the age of 60 with an existing health condition – and you feel it is unsafe for you to go to work, you should call your agency supervisor or case worker and you could potentially qualify for unemployment.
We will continue to update our members with new information as it becomes available. It was great to talk to so many of you this afternoon on our teletown hall – nearly 4,000 caregivers joined, but if you missed it and have questions, please visit our website at seiu775.org/covid19, which we’re updating continuously.
If you have any questions, please reach out to our Member Resource Center Monday – Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. at 1-866-371-3200 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will continue to fight to make sure our caregivers and communities are taken care of during this time.
SEIU 775 President