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Longleaf Select University Press Titles Spring/Summer 2021

The Caring Class
Home Health Aides in Crisis
By (author): Richard Schweid
Richard Schweid


ILR Press



Product Form:



General Trade : Age (years) 18
Mar 15, 2021
$36.95 CAD


9.2in x 6.1 x 0.8 in | 400 gr

Page Count:

192 pages
Cornell University Press
ILR Press
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Labor & Industrial Relations
Industrial relations, occupational health and safety|Health systems and services|Popular medicine and health

The number of elderly and disabled Americans in need of home health care is increasing annually, even as the pool of people?almost always women?willing to do this job gets smaller and smaller. The Caring Class takes readers inside the reality of home health care by following the lives of women training and working as home health aides in the South Bronx.

Richard Schweid examines home health care in detail, focusing on the women who tend to our elderly and disabled loved ones and how we fail to value their work. They are paid minimum wage so that we might be absent, getting on with our own lives. The book calls for a rethinking of home health care and explains why changes are urgent: the current system offers neither a good way to live nor a good way to die. By improving the job of home health aide, Schweid shows, we can reduce income inequality and create a pool of qualified, competent home health care providers who would contribute to the well-being of us all.

The Caring Class also serves as a guide into the world of our home health care system. Nearly 50 million US families look after an elderly or disabled loved one. This book explains the issues and choices they face. Schweid explores the narratives, histories, and people behind home health care in the United States, examining how we might improve the lives of both those who receive care and those who provide it.

Richard Schweid is author of a dozen books, including Invisible Nation, and Hot Peppers.

"The Caring Class brings to life a relatively under-studied topic in the US health-care system Virtually every page brings poignant images to mind, which makes the book a powerful tool in the education of policymakers and students."

- Paul V. Dutton, Northern Arizona University, author of Differential Diagnoses

"This book tells wonderful stories about direct care givers and the passion for caring they bring to their work. It also enlightens readers to inadequacies, inequities and injustices in long term care which urgently need to be addressed. It is a must read for anyone interested in long term care."

- Tara Cortes, Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing at NYU Meyers

"Schweid treats his subjects and their community with generosity of heart and purpose. He places these women and their stories in the foreground, and the entire book benefits from that choice. Schweid approaches the dilemmas within the home health aide profession from numerous informative angles, but his writing remains broadly accessible. As a result, The Caring Class is easy to imagine in the hands of undergraduates, or even thoughtful high schoolers, studying all manner of subjects related to the social sciences or public health."

- Chapter 16

"The Caring Class is an extremely readable and informative book for researchers, policymakers, and practitioners alike. [The author] provides an excellent understanding for necessary reforms at a national scale."

- ILR Review

"[The Caring Class] provides necessary information to understand deficiencies and challenges in the current system of home health care and a potential leverage point for building a strong workforce that is needed to have a sustainable care system where older adults who need care can continue to live in their homes with safety and dignity."

- The Gerantologist

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