In-between travel Bill passes first reading

Home support workers who work with older people and people with disabilities in the community are another step closer to being paid for both the time and the travel costs between clients. The Home and Community Support (Payment for Travel Between Clients) Settlement Bill is in Parliament and the Health Select Committee is hearing submissions over the coming weeks and is scheduled to report back to Parliament in mid-April 2016.

As Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says, “The Bill sets in place an enduring, affordable, and sustainable framework to remedy the in-between travel issue between Crown funded employers and their employees. It represents an important milestone in recognising the valuable work of people who provide care and support to assist elderly and disabled New Zealanders to stay living in their own homes.”

The settlement agreement also involves working employer, workers and government agreeing a process that will see the important work of home support carers changed towards a more “regularised” form of employment, recognising the fact that many households rely on the earnings from home support workers as their main source of income.