Text: H.Con.Res.94 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Bill Information (Except Text)

Text available as:

  • TXT
  • PDF (PDF provides a complete and accurate display of this text.) Tip?

Shown Here:
Referred in Senate (11/05/2003)

 
[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H. Con. Res. 94 Referred in Senate (RFS)]

  1st Session
H. CON. RES. 94


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                            November 5, 2003

Received and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and 
                                Pensions

_______________________________________________________________________

                         CONCURRENT RESOLUTION


 
   Expressing the sense of the Congress that community inclusion and 
    enhanced lives for individuals with mental retardation or other 
developmental disabilities is at serious risk because of the crisis in 
 recruiting and retaining direct support professionals, which impedes 
    the availability of a stable, quality direct support workforce.

Whereas there are more than 8,000,000 Americans who have mental retardation or 
        other developmental disabilities, including mental retardation, autism, 
        cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, epilepsy, and other related conditions;
Whereas individuals with mental retardation or other developmental disabilities 
        have substantial limitations on their functional capacities, including 
        limitations in two or more of the areas of self-care, receptive and 
        expressive language, learning, mobility, self-direction, independent 
        living, and economic self-sufficiency, as well as the continuous need 
        for individually planned and coordinated services;
Whereas for the past two decades individuals with mental retardation or other 
        developmental disabilities and their families have increasingly 
        expressed their desire to live and work in their communities, joining 
        the mainstream of American life;
Whereas the Supreme Court, in its Olmstead decision, affirmed the right of 
        individuals with mental retardation or other developmental disabilities 
        to receive community-based services as an alternative to institutional 
        care;
Whereas the demand for community supports and services is rapidly growing, as 
        States comply with the Olmstead decision and continue to move more 
        individuals from institutions into the community;
Whereas the demand will also continue to grow as family caregivers age, 
        individuals with mental retardation or other developmental disabilities 
        live longer, waiting lists grow, and services expand;
Whereas outside of families, private providers that employ direct support 
        professionals deliver the majority of supports and services for 
        individuals with mental retardation or other developmental disabilities 
        in the community;
Whereas direct support professionals provide a wide range of supportive services 
        to individuals with mental retardation or other developmental 
        disabilities on a day-to-day basis, including habilitation, health 
        needs, personal care and hygiene, employment, transportation, 
        recreation, and housekeeping and other home management-related supports 
        and services so that these individuals can live and work in their 
        communities;
Whereas direct support professionals generally assist individuals with mental 
        retardation or other developmental disabilities to lead a self-directed 
        family, community, and social life;
Whereas private providers and the individuals for whom they provide supports and 
        services are in jeopardy as a result of the growing crisis in recruiting 
        and retaining a direct support workforce;
Whereas providers of supports and services to individuals with mental 
        retardation or other developmental disabilities typically draw from a 
        labor market that competes with other entry-level jobs that provide less 
        physically and emotionally demanding work, and higher pay and other 
        benefits, and therefore these direct support jobs are not currently 
        competitive in today's labor market;
Whereas annual turnover rates of direct support workers range from 40 to 75 
        percent;
Whereas high rates of employee vacancies and turnover threaten the ability of 
        providers to achieve their core mission, which is the provision of safe 
        and high-quality supports to individuals with mental retardation or 
        other developmental disabilities;
Whereas direct support staff turnover is emotionally difficult for the 
        individuals being served;
Whereas many parents are becoming increasingly afraid that there will be no one 
        available to take care of their sons and daughters with mental 
        retardation or other developmental disabilities who are living in the 
        community; and
Whereas this workforce shortage is the most significant barrier to implementing 
        the Olmstead decision and undermines the expansion of community 
        integration as called for by President Bush's New Freedom Initiative, 
        placing the community support infrastructure at risk: Now, therefore, be 
        it
    Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring),

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This resolution may be cited as the ``Direct Support Professional 
Recognition Resolution''.

SEC. 2. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING SERVICES OF DIRECT SUPPORT 
              PROFESSIONALS TO INDIVIDUALS WITH DEVELOPMENTAL 
              DISABILITIES.

    It is the sense of the Congress that the Federal Government and the 
States should make it a priority to promote a stable, quality direct 
support workforce for individuals with mental retardation or other 
developmental disabilities that advances our Nation's commitment to 
community integration for such individuals and to personal security for 
them and their families.

            Passed the House of Representatives November 4, 2003.

            Attest:

                                                 JEFF TRANDAHL,

                                                                 Clerk.