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There's a background to it. When Doris Turner replaced Leon
Davis, Davis at that time was pressing her to organize home-care
workers, but Davis had already stepped down, awaiting the finality and
the success of the merger discussions, which, if they went through,
would mean that Davis would be the head of the hospital division of
Of the service as far as international?
Yes, to be replaced by Henry Nicholas after a couple of years.
That did not go through, so he, Davis, was in limbo without a position,
retired, and Doris was the president of 1199. So, under those
circumstances, one of the things, in that period there was still this
feud between Doris Turner and the anti-Turner people, the Save Our
Union people. Davis suggested the organization of home-care workers,
and Doris or Telbert King never did anything about it.
Telbert King was --
Was her chief aide. When the Unity in Progress to Save Our
Union campaign was successful, one of the first things that they
undertook was to organize home-care workers and set the ground in
motion, and it was then the Unity in Progress, is what they were
called. They were elected at that.
So this was in 1986?
This was 1987. It's '86, but in '87 they began the home-care
campaign. Now, home-care workers -- let me explain why and how we
got involved and how it works. The city and the state fund home care,
and their funds are used, and they encouraged non-profit agencies to
set themselves up to administer home care, to hire workers, set
standards, set payments, set wages, and do everything controlling the
home-care workers. There were different agencies. Some agencies
were organized by 1707 before we came in, part of District Council 37.
Of AFSCME. When we came in, most of it was unorganized, so
we began to organize.
How big a sector was this, and what types of workers were these
There must have been like twenty or thirty thousand home-
care workers. Most of them were the same as hospital workers in the
sense they were mostly female, mostly women, mostly African-
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