Joseph R. Biden Jr. announced a sweeping new $775 billion investment in caregiving programs on Tuesday, with a series of proposals covering care for small children, older adults and family members with disabilities.
The United States is the only rich country without paid family leave and has no universal child care; research has shown that labor force participation has stalled because of that.
To address care for older people and people with disabilities, the Biden campaign announced proposals to eliminate the waiting list for home and community care under Medicaid, which has roughly 800,000 people on it; provide fresh funding to states and groups that explore alternatives to institutional care; and add 150,000 new community health workers. The campaign said that coronavirus outbreaks in nursing homes had highlighted the necessity of providing care for aging adults at home.
The plan follows earlier proposals from Mr. Biden to provide benefits for people who care for family members instead of working for pay, an idea that has recently gained support from both parties. He would give unpaid caregivers a $5,000 tax credit as well as Social Security credits.
The Trump administration has also proposed policies for items like paid family leave and affordable child care, an effort led by the president’s daughter Ivanka Trump, who has framed the initiatives as economic ones.
Image: Peoria,AZ – May 25 2020: Former Vice President of the United States Joe Biden walking with supporters at a pre-Wing Ding march from Molly McGowan Park in Clear Lake, Iowa.