Interview with Nancy Jefferson

OK, tell me what you were talking to us about the difficulties and how you go about changing people's heads.


Well, you know, it was very difficult as I say that, ah, you know, especially with the welfare people that, that finally organized the POWER group with. You see, well the obstacles that were, that was before them. They had to make some hard decision based on how they had lived. They had lived with a precinct captain intimidating them, watching their every move. And they, that was, that was deep consideration. It was also who was placed in the welfare offices. See, the welfare offices were manned by all those politicians, ah, that placed those folks there. You know the case worker, all of those people, were politically appointed. Those people had to make a hard decision based on, can I live, even with this cut check, I know my check is cut, you know. But, also, I may be cut off, period if I follow this group that's telling me about voters will change what's happening to me. Those was hard decision based on their former intimidation, have lived like this for years with, with control and now these people are saying to me, we can change this by me voting. That was hard to do. It was hard to convince these people that, that it could be done and that we would stand with them. Now there were some people were, they, they, you know, we, I remember at least six or seven cases right at 2417 Rockwell, the Rockwell Gardens, where people, and this was Quigley's regime, here big Ed Quigley ruled the West Side and where they, and those people were absolutely, we put them back in. They were put out and we, we formed a group to put them back in and we sent them right back in and stood guard with them that nothing would happen to them. Because see what happened to them that we had to prove to them that the larger community now was a part of, of their personal problem and that's, that's how it, how it worked out.