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00:00:00 - Working as a nurses' aide at Pikeville Methodist Hospital / Changes to occupation

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Partial Transcript: Judy say your name.

Segment Synopsis: Bevins recalls stories of working as a nurses' aide inside Pikeville Methodist Hospital. She started in 1966 at the old hospital on the hill. She worked in pediatrics for about a year and a half before transferring to a total care area. Nurses' aides were responsible for patient care, checking them in and out, taking vitals, assisting doctors, and even administering medicine. Bevins then explains changes with nurses' aides and how they are no longer allowed to practice sterile techniques. Law changes have required nurses to do the jobs that nurses' aides used to, Bevins describes how hospitals now are phasing out nurses' aides. She holds a lot of bitterness and feels as if her job is unnecessary sometimes. Bevins then describes returning to work at Pikeville Methodist Hospital after the strike ended and being treated poorly, she thinks the administration was trying to get her to quit. Bevins worked the day shift on a floor for chronically ill patients. Bevins recalled hearing people speak negatively of the strikers who returned to work, but she saw herself as brave and dignified. Bevins stayed on day shift for three months before transferring to evening shift. She enjoyed evening shift and the people she was working with much better than the day shift.

Keywords: Cancer patients; Charts; Day shifts; Evening shifts; Federal laws; Hospital staff; Hospitals; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Medications; Medicine; Medicine nurses; Nurses' stations; Paperwork; Patient care; Patients; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Registered nurses (RNs); Responsibilities; Rounds; State laws; Sterile techniques; Strikers; Students; Treatments; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Catheterization; Medical care--Appalachian Region; Nurses' aides; Occupations; Pediatrics; Pikeville (Ky.); Practical nurses; Strikes and lockouts; Tube feeding; Vital signs

00:18:55 - Working as a nurses' aide in Mountain Manor nursing home

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Partial Transcript: What'd you do at the nursing home?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins describes working at the Mountain Manor nursing home. She recalls growing tired mentally and emotionally while working there because the patients never got well. The nursing home provided a haven for strikers from Pikeville Methodist Hospital. When the workers returned to work at the hospital after the strike, the nursing home laid them off so that they could draw unemployment.

Keywords: Ardena Wheeler; Bathing; Depression; Director of nurses; Employees; Feeding; Hospitals; Juanita Lewis; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Medications; Mountain Manor Nursing Home; Patient care; Patients; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Strikers; Unemployment benefits; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Labor unions--Organizing; Nurses' aides; Nursing homes; Occupations; Practical nurses; Strikes and lockouts; Unemployment insurance; Women political activists

00:23:18 - Applying to work in the Pikeville Methodist Hospital / First days on the job

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Partial Transcript: Well Judy, why'd you apply at Pikeville Methodist in the very first place back in 1966?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins' had just graduated high school when her brother offered her a job in the Pikeville Methodist Hospital. He had been working in the hospital as an orderly and he spoke with the director of nurses and got Bevins an interview. Bevins describes working in the hospital as one of the happiest times of her life. She recalls being terrified on her first day; she had no prior training and learned everything while she was on the job.

Keywords: Bathing; Catheters; Director of nurses; Employees; High schools; Hospital administrators; Hospitals; IVs; Lonnie Maynard; Nurses; Nursing; Orderlies; Patients; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Training; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Catheterization; Education; Families; Medical care--Appalachian Region; Nurses' aides; Practical nurses; Work environment

00:29:44 - Working as a "floating" nurses' aide in Pikeville Methodist Hospital

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Partial Transcript: Judy, how come you decided you wanted to switch to day shift after working evening shift all that time?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins describes switching from evening to day shift after she got married. Because her husband worked during the day, she did not get to see him very often. Switching to work during the day was easier for her and she doesn't have to work as hard. She has gotten used to the differences in day and evening shifts. Bevins is stationed on the seventh floor but they have her working as a floater, which she describes as exciting. Bevins describes working conditions in the hospital and how the amount of work hasn't changed much since the strike.

Keywords: Babies; Day shifts; Evening shifts; Hospital administration; Hospital staff; Hospitals; Husbands; Labor unions; Marriages; Obstetrics and gynecology (OB-GYN); Patient care; Patients; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Strikers; United Methodist Hospital; Vacation days

Subjects: Children; Families; Gynecology; Medical care--Appalachian Region; Nurses' aides; Obstetrics; Occupations; Strikes and lockouts; Work environment

00:35:45 - First night on strike at Pikeville Methodist Hospital

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Partial Transcript: Well, tell me--back to before you all came out on strike, um, what do you remember about the days when people were running around trying to organize?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins recalls the first night of the strike on Pikeville Methodist Hospital. She describes the confusion and excitement she felt in the moments leading up the strike. They could see the people gathering through the hospital windows. Bevins remembers that the supervisors who were on duty during the strike tried to make the hospital employees stay and work. Once they walked into the hospital lobby, Bevins saw all of the hospital board. Bevins describes the growing feeling of excitement and how she was afraid that a fight would break out on the hospital floor.

Keywords: Demonstrations; Hazel Ratliff; Henry Stratton; Hospital administration; Hospital boards; Hospitals; Jackie Justice; Labor unions; Lee D. Keene; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Lola McGuire; Lonnie Maynard; Nurses; Nurses stations; Orderlies; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Riots; Supervisors; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Labor unions--Organizing; Nurses' aides; Picketing; Practical nurses; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

00:45:32 - Strike on Pikeville Methodist Hospital

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Partial Transcript: Of course there was a lot of things happened later on that I heard about that I wasn't into.

Segment Synopsis: Bevins recalls encouraging a peaceful strike, sharing one story of picking up tacks out of the road. Bevins then describes an incident while she was on the picket line with a strikebreaker named Ruby Prater. Prater had worn Bevins' shoes that she left in the hospital. As Prater was going in to work one day, she and Bevins got into an argument and Bevins threatened her. Because the LPNs were threatened with losing their licenses, they found other ways to support the strikers. Bevins remembers Jackie Justice sharing information from the hospital about how the LPNs were not picking up trash inside the hospital anymore. During the strike, Bevins was worried about patient care inside the hospital. There were rumors circulating that Pikeville Methodist Hospital hired people with little to no training and even some who had drug and alcohol addictions. Jackie Justice and the other LPNs were concerned with the patient care in Pikeville Methodist Hospital during the strike. Bevins then shares details of security in the hospital during the strike; the hospital board added security dogs and other security measures.

Keywords: Attitudes; Hospital security; Hospitals; Jackie Justice; Labor unions; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Licenses; Mountain Manor Nursing Home; Nursing homes; Patient care; Patients; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Professional staff; Registered nurses (RNs); Ruby Prater; Scabs; Security guards; Strikers; Union officials; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Bomb threats; Drug addictions; Drugs; Explosives; Labor unions--Organizing; Medicine; Nurses' aides; Picketing; Practical nurses; Salaries; Strikebreakers; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

00:59:09 - Standing on the picket line

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Partial Transcript: Well, what did you do to pass the time on the picket line?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins describes meeting and talking to new people while she was on the picket line. She stood and held her sign on the side of the road. Bevins describes reading to pass the time, sometimes they would go up to a small grocery store for some food or drinks. Eventually they would go into a small shack that the CWA had built for them. Most of the time, Bevins just sat on the guardrails; she describes having marks on her legs from sitting on them for so long, as well as a bad sunburn. Bevins recalls standing on the picket line as hard work; she did not enjoy just standing still with nothing to do.

Keywords: Breaks; Communications Workers of America (CWA); Employees; Evening shifts; Groceries; Grocery stores; Guardrails; Hospitals; Jackie Justice; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Seasons; Signs; Strikers; Summer; United Methodist Hospital; Vacations

Subjects: Communications Workers of America; Labor unions--Organizing; Picketing; Strikes and lockouts; Weather; Women political activists

01:03:21 - Expectations for the strike

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Partial Transcript: When you came out on strike, what did you think the strike was gonna be like?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins expected to be out on strike for a week before they were able to return to work. In reality, the strike lasted 28 months and did not end with a labor contract. She describes the first night on the picket line as violent with a lack of organization. Throughout the entire strike, CWA would tell the strikers that it wouldn't last much longer and Bevins believed them. Bevins thought there would be a contract made with the board of directors of the Pikeville Methodist Hospital. The strikers never thought that the strike would last as long as it did; they thought that because so many of the hospital staff signed union cards and went out on strike that the hospital board would agree to a contract. The hospital administration instead made the remaining staff work long hours to make up for the workers on strike. Bevins remembers a committee being formed while they worked in the old hospital. The committee tried to take their grievances to Lee D. Keene to prevent a strike but he refused to listen. Bevins does not remember any events leading up the strike, but she can recall seeing all of the board members in the lobby of the hospital on the night of the strike.

Keywords: Board members; Committees; Communications Workers of America (CWA); Contracts; Grievances; Hospital boards; Hospital staff; Hospitals; Lee D. Keene; Lola Wallace; Nurses; Patients; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Registered nurses (RNs); Strikers; Terminal patients; Union cards; United Methodist Hospital; Working conditions

Subjects: Communications Workers of America; Labor unions-Organizing; Picketing; Practical nurses; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists; Work environment

01:10:40 - Observing court proceedings during the strike

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Partial Transcript: The only thing I remember, uh, I remember the, uh, when we all had to go to court for so long, when all the injunctions was gotten against everybody and, uh, everybody was in court.

Segment Synopsis: Bevins describes attending court proceedings during the strike. She recalls Walter May's testimony when he was accused of following one of the strikers home. Bevins never had to testify herself, but enjoyed watching other testimonies. She describes that time as an exciting field day.

Keywords: Communications Workers of America (CWA); Court cases; Court proceedings; Courtrooms; Director of nurses; Hospital administrations; Hospital boards; Hospitals; Judges; Labor unions; Lonnie Maynard; Mrs. Connor; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Strikers; Testimonies; United Methodist Hospital; Walter May; Witnesses

Subjects: Communications Workers of America; Courts; Criminal courts; Labor injunctions; Practical nurses; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

01:13:52 - Other actions during the strike

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Partial Transcript: Well, what else did you do during this strike?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins shares that she did not make any trips with the other strikers; she describes herself as being in the background of the strike. Bevins did stand on other picket lines around town, at Bruce Walters Ford Sales, Shurtleff's Laundry, and Piggly Wiggly. Bevins describes their picket lines as peaceful; they wouldn't resort to violence and would just talk to the people who crossed their picket line. Bevins then discusses attending union meetings and how they only shared good news even though it was going badly. Once the picket line was taken down, Bevins began working at Magic Mart, where she folded clothes. She missed working with patients and the thought of not returning to work at the hospital depressed her.

Keywords: Bruce Walters Ford Sales; Communications Workers of America (CWA); Hospitals; Labor unions; Picket duty; Picket lines; Piggly Wiggly; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Scabs; Shurtleff's Laundry; Shurtleff's Sanitary Cleaners and Laundry; Strikers; Union halls; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Communications Workers of America; Labor union meetings; Picketing; Pikeville (Ky.); Strikebreakers; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

01:22:08 - Feelings about strikebreakers

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Partial Transcript: Well how'd you feel when people were crossing your picket line and driving into the hospital to work?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins recalls her feelings as other people would cross their picket line. She felt as if the strikers were fighting each other as they let people through their picket line. Bevins describes the difficulties she faced by not crossing the picket line while her family and friends were inside the hospital. She was unable to visit her family members who were being treated in the hospital because she didn't want to break the picket line.

Keywords: Emergencies; Friends; Hospitals; Job security; Labor unions; Lola Wallace; Nieces; Parents; Patients; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Scabs; Strikers; Surgeries; Union cards; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Families; Labor unions--Organizing; Picketing; Pikeville (Ky.); Prestonsburg (Ky.); Strikebreakers; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

01:30:11 - Unionizing in the hospital after the strike

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Partial Transcript: Well what do you remember about when you went back in and you started signing cards again?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins remembers returning to the hospital after the strike and the efforts to unionize. The workers began signing union cards again and Bevins describes this time as scary because they were being closely watched by the hospital administration. Bevins' brother, Lonnie did not return to the hospital once the strike ended; he was not earning enough to support his family. He began working in the mines, which paid more. After the first strike had failed, Bevins did not think the second attempt to organize Pikeville Methodist Hospital would be successful. She was disappointed when they only got a few union cards signed.

Keywords: Ambulances; Benefits; Contracts; Day shifts; Evening shifts; Grievances; Hospital administrations; Hospital boards; Hospital workers; Hospitals; Labor unions; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Lonnie Maynard; Medical licenses; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Union cards; United Methodist Hospital; Working conditions

Subjects: Children; Coal miners; Families; Job security; Labor unions--Organizing; Occupations; Practical nurses; Salaries; Strikes and lockouts; Work environment

01:36:15 - Support from friends and family

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Partial Transcript: Well, um, let me ask you this. During the strike, did your family and friends support you being out?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins describes receiving support from her family and friends while she was on strike. Her friends would offer prayers and pray in church that God would remedy the situation for them. Since the strike, Bevins and several members of her family have become Christians. Bevins describes how the strike helped her brother, Lonnie Maynard, leave and get a better job so he could better support his family.

Keywords: Baptist Churches; Brothers; Christians; Freewill Baptist Church; Friends; God; Labor unions; Lonnie Maynard; Methodist churches; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Prayers; Religion; Sisters; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Children; Christianity; Church buildings; Families; Occupations; Picketing; Salaries; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

01:38:52 - Reflection on her role in the strike

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Partial Transcript: Are there things that you think that you could've done during the strike or you wanted to do during the strike that would've helped win it, when you look back at it now?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins shares that she wishes she would have done more for the strike. Bevins explains that during the strike, she started to feel depressed and let it get her down instead of supporting the strike by going to more places. She also says that she wished she had been more forceful and shared more of her opinions. If she had it to do over again, Bevins said she would do it again because it is a worthwhile cause that has brought better benefits and working conditions to the hospital workers. Reflecting on the strike, Bevins shares that she felt she did what she had to do during the strike and that she would do it again. Giving advice for strikers in the future, Bevins encourages them to do it without violence and to control themselves. Bevins shares that the strike brought her closer to several other women who used to work in the Pikeville Methodist Hospital.

Keywords: Advice; Attitudes; Benefits; Depression; Grievances; Hospital administrations; Hospital boards; Hospitals; Jackie Justice; Labor unions; Lola Wallace; Lonnie Maynard; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Retirement plans; Sick days; Strikers; United Methodist Hospital; Violence; Working conditions

Subjects: Children; Ethics; Picketing; Retirement; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists; Work environment

01:47:43 - Support from her family

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Partial Transcript: Well, what about your family? W--do you have a history of--are people in your family members of unions, or?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins shares that her father used to drill gas wells until he developed a heart problem and was disabled for several years. Although he was not involved in a union, he was supportive of Bevins' involvement in the strike, as was the rest of her family. Bevins' brother Lonnie walked the picket line with her because he worked in the hospital, her other family did not join them on the picket line but they did support their efforts.

Keywords: Brothers; Fathers; Heart problems; Hospitals; Labor unions; Lonnie Maynard; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Plumbers; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Coal miners; Families; Family histories; Labor unions--Organizing; Picketing; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists

01:50:21 - Managing a household during the strike

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Partial Transcript: I'm trying to get an idea from everybody, um, about what their households were like while they were trying to get by during the strike and how they managed.

Segment Synopsis: Bevins remembers living in an apartment with Jackie during the strike. Bevins was initially given only $5 for food each week and CWA also paid her rent and other bills. After she went out on strike, Bevins was sent money from the credit union in the hospital. After struggling to pay for food, Bevins' food allowance was increased to $20 a week. Bevins describes receiving support from other people during the strike; several of her friends and family would help them out. Bevins describes doing the housework while Jackie went into work at the hospital. Bevins describes feeling resentful towards CWA for failing to get their jobs back and bring a union to the hospital. Bevins thinks that a different union could have made a difference in the strike, supporting UMWA.

Keywords: Allowances; Apartments; Bills; Chores; Communications Workers of America (CWA); Credit unions; Groceries; Hospitals; Household duties; Households; Jackie Justice; Labor unions; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Registered nurses (RNs); Resignations; United Methodist Hospital; United Mine Workers of America (UMWA); Working conditions

Subjects: Communications Workers of America; Families; Labor unions--Strike benefits; Practical nurses; Strikes and lockouts; United Mine Workers of America; Women political activists; Work environment

01:59:28 - Personal biography

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Partial Transcript: Well, let me shift this again, I know you must be getting exhausted. But I want to get some personal biography.

Segment Synopsis: Bevins shares details of her personal life. She was born in 1945 at the Pikeville Methodist Hospital. She attended a one room schoolhouse until third grade and then transferred to Johns Creek High School. She graduated in 1965 and she worked at Shurtleff's laundry for about 8 months. She started working at Pikeville Methodist Hospital and she moved into an apartment with Jackie. Her mother stayed at home while her father worked, they struggled when he became disabled and his social security didn't come in right away. As they got older, Bevins and her siblings got jobs and were able to help provide for the family. At that time, Bevins was living with Jackie in her mobile home. She moved back in when her father got sick to help take care of him. Her father had a massive coronary and died in 1979. Her mother had a stroke in 1980 which paralyzed the right side of her body. Her mother was also diabetic and she went blind overnight. Once her mother passed away, Bevins struggled to feel at home. She eventually sold her house and bought a motor home. Bevins then shares details of how she met her husband.

Keywords: Apartments; Coronaries; Elementary schools; Grandparents; High schools; Hospitals; Jackie Justice; Johns Creek High School; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Mandy Hawkins; Parents; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Schoolhouses; Shurtleff's Sanitary Cleaners and Laundry; Siblings; Social Security; Strokes; Teachers; United Methodist Hospital

Subjects: Childhood; Children; Education; Families; Lexington (Ky.); Myocardial infarction; Pike County (Ky.); Practical nurses; Rural schools--Kentucky

02:20:05 - Lessons learned from the strike

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Partial Transcript: Well, let's see. When you came out on strike, what'd you think your future was gonna be like?

Segment Synopsis: Bevins describes expecting the strike to end after two weeks and was disappointed when the strike lasted longer. Bevins learned to appreciate a good job and the importance of treating people kindly. She wishes that the hospital board just would have listened. When faced with the same situation, Bevins said she would do the same thing and go on strike. But as she hears other workers talking about going on strike, she stays out of the discussion. Bevins then describes the current working conditions of the hospital, the hospital being understaffed and overworked. She says that though the working conditions are bad, she expects the hospital administration to make any changes necessary to avoid a strike.

Keywords: Benefits; Employees; Hospital administrations; Hospitals; Labor unions; Licensed practical nurses (LPNs); Marriages; Obstetrics and gynecology (OB-GYN); Petitions; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Registered nurses (RNs); Representation; Schedules; Supervisors; United Methodist Hospital; Working conditions

Subjects: Gynecology; Labor unions--Organizing; Obstetrics; Practical nurses; Salaries; Strikes and lockouts; Women political activists; Work environment