Please join your Union brothers and sisters on Saturday, February 24, as we caravan to San Diego to support the Working People’s Day of Action! Anyone interested in joining us, please contact Executive Vice President Eric Norwood at the local at 818-845-9003 to RSVP! We will be carpooling to the event.
One hundred and sixty-one home-based customer service representatives who work for Frontier Communications in Texas overwhelmingly won a mail ballot election to join CWA. A strong inside organizing committee was supported by officers and activists of CWA Local 6171 and by District 6 organizing staff.
The committee set up an effective network to share information and updates on a daily basis. They overcame the challenge of an all home-based workforce by reaching out and meeting agents at stores, restaurants, and at homes in addition to connecting via text, social media, and phone calls. Members of Local 6171, which represents several Frontier units in District 6, were at every committee meeting to talk about how a union voice makes a difference at Frontier.
Home-based customer service representatives with Frontier Communications in Texas are joining CWA.
Frontier Members – CWA District 9 is looking into the news story regarding the possible sale of portions of Calif/Texas/Florida. We will update Members as we get answers.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee (BDAC) adopted a recommendation that would mandate the use of contractors to move telephone company equipment to make room for new attachers’ equipment. This is work that is currently performed by trained, skilled, career employees at AT&T, Verizon, Frontier, and other employers.
“The BDAC recommendation threatens public safety,” said CWA President Chris Shelton. “Mandating contractors rather than trained career employees to do this work can lead to dangerous conditions for the public, such as ungrounded wires and heavy terminals hanging without adequate support. The BDAC recommendation also threatens the good middle-class jobs of thousands of workers across the country, and violates contracts negotiated by our union with our members’ employers.”
“CWA supports common sense proposals to streamline pole attachment work to facilitate broadband expansion consistent with protections for public and worker safety and respect for legally-binding collective bargaining agreements. The BDAC recommendation fails on both accounts. The FCC should reject the BDAC’s radical One Touch Make Ready recommendation,” Shelton said.
Read more here.
CWA has formed the AT&T Mobility Organizing Brigade. Their mission statement is simple, “One Industry, One Union.” The Brigade is working to organize Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile, and other carriers throughout the wireless industry. They have put together a group of universal industry standards that through successful organization the Brigade hopes to achieve. As such the Wireless Workers Statement of Principles is now live on the website: WirelessWorkersUnited.org . All who are interested are encouraged to fill out the embedded contact information form on WirelessWorkersUnited.org to show solidarity and stay up to date with the Brigade’s activities. Furthermore, those who know someone who works in the wireless industry at a retail store, call center, as a technician, etc. are encouraged to share the Brigade’s website with that person and get them in touch with an organizer. Sharing the website on social media is also encouraged. Questions can be directed to Local 9003’s organizer Tyler Marik.
In 2013, CWA District 6 took a grievance all the way to arbitration where we got a ruling that two dozen CWA-represented AT&T customer service representatives in St. Louis were entitled to higher-classification differential pay under their contract for performing duties of a higher-paid job for a lengthy period of time as a temporary assignment.
When CWA attempted to calculate the back-pay with the company, AT&T offered a ridiculously low-ball figure and then went to federal court to attempt to avoid having to pay. The court ruled in CWA’s favor, and AT&T was forced to participate in a round of remedy hearings before the arbitrator.
Now, four years after the initial arbitration award, 22 workers have finally received a total of more than $228,000 – more than four times what AT&T initially offered. Fifteen received amounts in the $11,000 to $14,500 range.
“This is a big victory not only for the workers finally receiving the back-pay they deserved, but it’s also a win for all workers at AT&T,” said CWA District 6 Vice President Claude Cummings. “The company tried every avenue in the court system to try to skirt their legal duty to negotiate job duty changes with the Union, and we won at every level of their appeal. This win sends a strong message to AT&T that we will fight them for what is right no matter how long it takes.”
CWA is continuing to fight AT&T’s proposed layoff of more than a thousand workers, a betrayal of the company’s promise to create thousands of good, middle class jobs.
Since AT&T announced plans just before Christmas to lay off technicians and call center workers in nearly every geographic region, CWA has been working on several fronts to block this action.
A recent series of round-the-clock discussions with the company resulted in a delay of the effective date of the earliest layoffs to Jan. 9, but so far we haven’t been able to completely stop this surplus. We have been able to prevent a small number of layoffs.
So far, AT&T has put forward a proposal to cut thousands of work hours from employees’ schedules, while continuing to contract out work and send good jobs overseas. The contracting out of this work and AT&T’s offshoring of good jobs is the real issue. AT&T must stop hiring contractors to do the same work that employees are qualified and trained to do.
CWA members are frustrated, especially in light of AT&T’s statements and pledge to invest at least $1 billion and create at least 7,000 good middle class jobs, as CEO Randall Stephenson promised last year. CWA will continue to fight back against these job cuts and to demand that contracted work be performed by AT&T employees.
CWA District 6 (covering the Southwestern states of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri and Kansas) filed a federal lawsuit and National Labor Relations Board charges asserting that the company is violating the AT&T Southwest collective bargaining agreement by laying off workers while at the same time using contract employees to do work that CWA members are trained and qualified to perform.
Other districts where AT&T is proposing to lay off workers later this month and in February and March have filed executive grievances challenging the layoffs and the company’s use of contractors. CWA will pursue every possible avenue and take whatever action is necessary to stop these layoffs and keep good middle class jobs in our communities.
CWA members overwhelmingly voted to ratify the tentative agreement covering 21,000 AT&T Mobility workers under the Orange Contract. Congratulations on a hard-fought contract!
The new contract offers more pay, more job security, and more work for CWA members. As we see AT&T’s non-union competition eliminate thousands of jobs, close a dozen call centers, and cut back on pay, we are fighting back against these headwinds for real improvements in the wireless industry.
Although we know this agreement is not everything we deserve, we will keep fighting and are proud of what we achieved together.
Great contracts are not won at the bargaining table. They are won on the shop floor and on the streets. As more and more CWA members become active in our union, we will see our power strengthen. After 11 months of mobilization, tough bargaining and a historic three-day strike, it was you and your coworkers who proved to the company that when we stand together, we win.