Currently, Personal Care Assistants (PCAs) in Minnesota can only clock-in hours during which they provide services to a person with a disability. However, if they need to drive their client to medical appointments or other personal errands, the time spent driving is not considered time a PCA can clock-in. PCAs provide critical services to the disability community, and the current wage-earning process inhibits PCAs from providing more services that require travel by car. Allowing PCAs to consider time driving a client as on-the-clock expands access to services to the disability community.
Restricting PCAs’ ability to transport clients directly contradicts the principles set forth by the Minnesota Olmstead Plan, adopted by the State of Minnesota in response to a legal settlement in 2011. The Olmstead Plan states that people with disabilities are entitled to live, learn, work, participate in their communities and enjoy life in the most integrated setting possible.
Allowing PCAs to transport clients is key to ensuring that all people with disabilities can participate fully in their communities.
- Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities
- PCA Reform Coalition
- Minnesota First Provider Alliance
Because this will increase the amount of qualified billable hours for PCAs, there will be an increased cost to the PCA program. This may receive opposition from any legislator or organization that prioritizes strict fiscal policies.
Goal of Policy
The policy’s goal is to expand access to services for Minnesotans with disabilities who rely on the PCA program and to fairly compensate PCAs who serve the disability community.