Name- Lizette Bergeron
City- Sudbury, ON
Profession- Registered Social Worker
Employer- Ministry of Child and Youth Services
Lizette Bergeron is speaking out on behalf of PSWs who she says are "awesome" . Lizette is the sole care giver for her mother and sister, both of whom require regular and extensive home care. But, because she is single she must work she cannot stay at home to care for her family. So, Lizette hired a home care worker from ComCare hoping that this would help her and her family.
The home care worker was hired to help with her sister's needs in the morning- this made it possible for Lizette to get ready and go off to work. In the evening a worker came to look after her mother's needs. This worker came to be a very big part of their lives. "Having a regular schedule was very helpful to my sister. She (and I) could depend on our worker because she was always, always there. If she were sick she would call to let me know. If she were late, she would call. I don't know what I would've done without her," said Ms. Bergeron.
Well she found out soon.
Lizette's home care worker was let go because after an unannounced home visit the worker was attending to a client. When the worker told the manager to wait, while she care for the client the manager became incensed and called the worker insubordinate. Lizette's world turned upside down after that. There were gaps in care and the regular schedule that she and her previous PSW had created fell apart.
New workers were sent but if they were sick, ComCare would not call Lizette. If they did call they would ask to speak with Lizette's mother or sister- both of whom are developmentally disabled- Lizette is the primary caregiver for both. According to Lizette the company deliberately misled new worker by telling them there was no union. In addition she feels they sent conflicting messages to their staff.
Lizette says that for the most part, the PSWs were great- she faults the company, ComCare for the following concerns, "Many PSWs simply cannot afford to do the work anymore. Many are paid below what they are worth and often the worker ends up paying to work at ComCare. They use their own cars to reach appointments and use their own cell phones to set them up. No gas or mileage is paid to them. I sat down with my previous home care worker and we did the path. It seems ComCare owes her $9,000 in unpaid gas and mileage! Because of this many younger workers are leaving or not entering the filed at all- this is creating a shortfall of workers and overwork for those currently doing home care."
" All I want is for PSWs to be treated fairly and professionally. Home care is hard work and I deeply appreciate the work PSWs do- it allows me to do the things I need to do and for my family to live in comfort. Pay them what they're due!"
References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
Response: click here"The company deliberately misled new worker..." - Lizette Bergeron - Testimonials - Home Care Workers rights to travel time and gas expenses