"This Is a Fight for Health Care with Dignity" Organizing to Win
"I've had a taste of it and now I've got the bug. We had two strikes against us when we started and it was so invigorating to win."
-- JANET ROBIDEAU
I n August 1989, Janet Robideau, a 38-year-old mother of one, went to work on the swing shift as a nurse's aide at the Hillside Manor Nursing Home in Missoula, Montana. Of the 102 total patients at Hillside Manor, 39 were under her care for several hours. As a relatively new employee at the home, Robideau had to make some quick and risky decisions. If Mrs. A needed assistance to get to the toilet, then cleaning up the vomit covering Mrs. B would have to wait. Other patients had not yet been initially checked. Robideau asked the director of nursing for help, but was told, "Help will be here in a couple of hours. In the meantime, you have to do, what you have to."