On January 19, 2024, UPE met with the County regarding the working conditions at the Welcome Homes.
UPE started by asking for a job description for the Engagement Social Workers, which was originally supposed to be ready by January but has now been pushed to the first week in February, which means that we will not receive them until sometime in March. We addressed concerns from members regarding taking breaks/lunches (or lack thereof), locks on bedroom doors, having more frequent janitorial services including but not limited to the cleaning of furniture, and identity safety for members (blocking of license plates).
The County responded that all employees should be taking breaks and lunches throughout their shift but will check with the supervisors to ensure breaks and lunches will be taken. As we sat in the meeting, they called to have the locks removed from all youth bedroom doors. They are also looking into the cost of more frequent janitorial services. They understood that when more youth are in the home, more frequent janitorial services may be necessary. Management will also look into blocking the license plates of the staff at the Welcome Homes.
Management provided UPE with an update on where the providers are in terms of getting licensed and taking over the Welcome Homes, which may now be June or July.
Thank you to the advocates for their participation,