42 USC 15111 - Findings

Congress finds that
(1) direct support workers, especially young adults, have played essential roles in providing the support needed by individuals with developmental disabilities and expanding community options for those individuals;
(2) 4 factors have contributed to a decrease in the available pool of direct support workers, specifically
(A) the small population of individuals who are age 18 through 25, an age group that has been attracted to direct support work in the past;
(B) the rapid expansion of the service sector, which attracts individuals who previously would have elected to pursue employment as direct support workers;

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(C) the failure of wages in the human services sector to keep pace with wages in other service sectors; and
(D) the lack of quality training and career advancement opportunities available to direct support workers; and
(3) individuals with developmental disabilities benefit from assistance from direct support workers who are well trained, and benefit from receiving services from professionals who have spent time as direct support workers.