April 26, 2016
District 1 County Representative
I care for my brother, Marlon. Marlon had juvenile diabetes that worsened over his lifetime, and was eventually declared legally blind. He has a pancreas and kidney transplant. Without IHSS, I’d have to put in him in an institution so that he could receive the care he needs—but thankfully, I don’t have to.
Fifteen years ago, Marlon’s condition worsened so much that we were told he was on his deathbed. It was a miracle that he had a match on the donor list. Since his pancreas and kidney transplant in 2002, I’ve been doing everything necessary to ensure that he can live independently on his own. I take him to his doctor’s appointments, read and open his mail, and prepare three meals a day plus six snacks for him.
My brother is older than I am. When we were younger and my mom was busy working, he was the one who would take care of me and send me off to school. Even when we were kids, he always protected and took care of me. That’s one of the reasons I love caring for him, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I think it’s important to be active in UDW. I’ve spoken out a Fight for $15 rallies to advocate for fair wages for home care workers and other underpaid workers. It’s not fair that workers can’t make a decent wage to support themselves and their families. We all need to be a part of this fight! I joined the statewide bargaining team to make sure we have a voice. For the first time, providers from San Diego, Riverside, and Orange Counties are able to join together to negotiate a contract with the state that will improve our wages and benefits, and keep IHSS fully funded.
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