Arkansas lawmakers work to tackle high turnover rates

Arkansas lawmakers work to tackle high turnover rates

LITTLE ROCK, AR (KAIT/KARK) - Arkansas lawmakers work to tackle growing turnover rates at the state's human development centers.

NBC affiliate KARK reports a turnover rate as high as 200% each year at some centers.

"You're dealing with a medically fragile population often times," said State Senator Jason Rapert. "Having a situation where it's always a new face somebody who frankly has just barely been trained for the position that's a concern."

A concern shared by consultants and disability rights groups.

During a presentation Monday, consultants suggested moving patients out of the centers and into community based programs.

Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson also pushed for improvements in community based care by recently agreeing to use money from a tobacco settlement to reduce a waiting list for community based care.

Addressing efforts to bring in quality employees, DHS workers at the meeting told lawmakers they are working to begin offering caretakers a starting hourly wage of $9.00 as well as working on boosting morale in the workplace.

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