facts and trends

ISSUE 23

NOVEMBER 8, 2017

Examine racial and gender disparities. All direct care workers aren’t the same.

 

Despite their critical role in supporting older adults and people with disabilities nationwide, women in the direct care workforce—and women of color, in particular—are more likely to live in poverty than men. Women of color in direct care also have smaller family incomes and are more reliant on public benefits than their white counterparts. This research brief examines racial and gender disparities in the direct care workforce, with a focus on populations that have historically experienced differential treatment in employment. Specifically, we ask: how has the racial and gender composition of this workforce changed over the past 10 years? And how do race and gender shape the demographic, employment, and economic characteristics of the direct care workforce? Policymakers and long-term care providers must understand and address the distinct challenges facing workers within the direct care workforce.

 

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