Easterseals Participant Testifies at Joint Finance Committee for Higher Pay for Direct Support Professionals
|Easterseals Participant Testifies at Joint Finance Committee for Higher Pay for Direct Support Professionals (02/26/2021)|
Mikayla Buterbaugh, of Newark (formerly of Middletown), recently testified at Delaware’s
Joint Finance Budget Hearing sharing her experience with Easterseals and pleading with the committee to
ensure fair pay for Direct Support Professionals, who support adults with disabilities like Mikayla.
At the hearing, Buterbaugh shared, “I am 23 years old and have Down syndrome. I may need help doing
things but I am not defined by my disability. I am thankful for Easterseals and everyone who loves and
advocates for me. I have been a member of Easterseals since I was young and had therapies and when I
graduated from high school Easterseals helped me find the right job. That’s when I met Camille Pringle, and
she has been my job coach from Easterseals ever since.”
Buterbaugh has been employed at Grotto Pizza on Concord Pike for the past three years. During her
testimony she shared that her coworkers are thankful for and respect her and the job she does.
“I am asking you to please make sure Direct Support Professionals like Miss Camille are paid fairly for their
very important job,” Buterbaugh shared. “I don’t ever want people like Miss Camille to have to go look for
another job because they don’t earn enough money supporting people with disabilities. Please vote more
funding for DSPs. For people like me … our lives depend on it.”
The State sets the reimbursement rates for community service providers like Easterseals who deliver
services to adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities. The wages for Direct Support Professionals
are a part of the reimbursement rates for the services, which are underfunded by approximately 30 percent.
Easterseals Delaware & Maryland’s Eastern Shore offers a range of services, including children’s therapies,
assistive technology, recreational camping, day programs for adults with physical or intellectual disabilities,
and respite services for caregivers. To learn more about how Easterseals helps children and adults with
disabilities, call 1-800-677-3800 or visit www.de.easterseals.com.
Mikayla Buterbaugh testified about her experience with Easterseals and to ask for increased state funding for
services for people with disabilities at the Joint Finance Committee.
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