April 4, 2024

Contact: [email protected]

Urging Texas Legislature to Increase Pay for Direct Support Professionals

AUSTIN, TX – In a resolute step towards championing those who care for Texans with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD), Time To Care: Save Texas Caregivers Now is proud to announce that Special Olympics Texas has joined the coalition, further strengthening the statewide movement to address the urgent issue of underfunding faced by direct support professionals (DSPs) who tirelessly care individuals with IDD.

The chronic underfunding of DSPs has not only compromised the quality of care provided to individuals with IDD but has also led to the regrettable closure of essential group homes, leaving many vulnerable Texans without vital support.

“Special Olympics Texas is proud to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with a coalition fighting for higher wages for DSPs in Texas,” said Tim Martin, CEO of Special Olympics Texas. 

The coalition is urging state leaders to authorize an emergency appropriations request through the Legislative Budget Board (LBB) to raise the salary for community-based DSPs from $10.60 to $15 an hour. This will help address the immediate workforce crisis facing DSPs, ensuring that Texans with IDD can receive the support they need.

Coalition spokesperson Sandy Batton expressed profound gratitude for Special Olympics Texas’ partnership, stating: “The addition of Special Olympics Texas to our coalition fortifies our resolve and amplifies our collective voice. Together, we are forging a path towards a brighter future, one where the people who care for Texans with IDD receive the support they deserve.”

For more information on the Time To Care: Save Texas Caregivers Now coalition and to access testimonials from advocates, family members and care providers, please click here.

Special Olympics Texas provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community. Learn more at

Time To Care: Save Texas Caregivers Now is a coalition dedicated to securing competitive wages for Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) who provide essential care to Texans with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD). Through collaboration and grassroots efforts, the coalition strives to enact meaningful change at both the legislative and community levels. To learn more about how to get involved at