CONTACT: Daniela Perez,

Georgia Care Workers Celebrate Investment in Home and Community-Based Services, Setting the Stage for Wage Increases

Atlanta, GA—The National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA), the leading voice for dignity and fairness for millions of domestic workers across the country, celebrates a key victory in increasing funding to Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) programs that will set the stage to raising the wages of direct care workers in Georgia following the final approval of the 2024-2025 state budget, signed by Governor Brian Kemp. This achievement represents a critical step forward in our ongoing fight to ensure Medicaid’s home care programs are adequately funded in order to pay direct care workers a fair wage and to stabilize the workforce in order to ensure access to long-term care for the aging and individuals with disabilities in their homes and communities.  

Below is a statement from NDWA:

“This week, after months of advocacy, Georgia care workers secured a major victory in their journey towards improving wages and working conditions for care workers across Georgia and the country. The newly approved budget effectively passed rate increases for Medicaid HCBS providers that can help raise the floor for direct care worker compensation. 

These enhancements are crucial as the direct care workforce is poised for significant expansion, expected to add over 1 million new jobs by 2031. With national median annual earnings of $23,688, care workers continue to face growing financial challenges. The boost in state funding acknowledges the invaluable contributions that direct care workers bring to their communities and the need for greater investment in care to create a more stable, high-quality system. 

Additionally, the budget makes an important yet modest investment in addressing the service needs of more than 7,000 Georgians waiting for care by adding 500 annualized slots and creating 100 new slots in the New Option (NOW) and Comprehensive Supports (COMP) waiver programs.

While we recognize these important advances, we are mindful that the journey toward equitable wages within the care workforce continues.  NDWA is hopeful that the State of Georgia will take steps to ensure early compliance with the federal Ensuring Access to Medicaid rule that will require providers to allot 80% of funding for personal care services in HCBS to compensation for the direct care workforce. Based on recent rate studies done across HCBS programs in Georgia, this funding could be used to set a wage floor of at least $17.50, combatting the chronic shortages facing this workforce due to low wages. NDWA remains committed to pushing for wages that reflect the cost of living and ensuring that care workers can sustain themselves and their families without financial distress. Today, we celebrate this progress as a critical step forward to improving wages for direct care workers in Georgia. We extend our gratitude to the disability, labor, and overall advocacy community, along with our legislative allies, for standing with us in this fight. Our work is far from over, and we will continue to champion the cause of all care workers, driving forward until our care system reflects the true value of its workers.” 

The Georgia HCBS campaign is part of a broader NDWA campaign to transform our care infrastructure by raising standards for the majorly Medicaid-funded direct care workforce and improving the quality of care for recipients. NDWA’s work to increase state and federal funding to Home and Community-Based Services aims to address workforce shortages by guaranteeing a significant portion of Medicaid funds to be directed toward increasing direct care worker wages while also using data collection mandates, rate studies, and other oversight tools to secure and raise future investment in HCBS. While our strategies focus on growing HCBS funding to allow more care recipients access to independence and critical care support and to create a stable workforce, we are also committed to enforcement work to realize higher standards for direct care workers and combat common issues in the industry.


National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA)
National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) is the leading voice for dignity and fairness for millions of domestic workers in the United States. Founded in 2007, NDWA works for respect, recognition and inclusion in labor protections for domestic workers, the majority of whom are immigrants and women of color. NDWA is powered by over 70 affiliate organizations and local chapters and by a growing membership base of nannies, house cleaners and care workers in over 20 states. Learn more at NDWA is a non-partisan non-profit organization that does not endorse, support, or oppose any candidates for public office.