Verizon Communications Strike
August 7, 2011 by staff
Verizon Communications Strike, From Massachusetts to Washington, DC, tens of thousands of Verizon Communications workers went on strike early today after unions of technicians repair phones, customer service representatives and installers of cable is not agree a new contract with the telecommunications company.
Communications Workers of America (CWA), together with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), trade unions representing 45,000 workers, said the negotiations, including health coverage, pensions and work rules, stagnated with Verizon require more than 100 concessions from workers.
“Even when 11, as contracts expire, Verizon continued to try to strip 50 years of collective bargaining gains for middle-class workers and their families,” the union statement said.
Strikers picketing the company’s New York office this morning, after the strike was announced at midnight.
“Why do people in the background must always return the concessions?” Anita said Long, who has been with Verizon for 32 years. “Why is not the top management turns its back, when my manager brings home to 23 million a year, I have a problem with that, but want to take my pension, my health insurance?”
Verizon workers picket outside the headquarters of the company, August 7, 2011 in New York.Verizon said the strike will not affect customers of Verizon Wireless, but because it’s field technicians and call center workers who could cause problems for customers with fixed line phones, Internet services, and Verizon FiOS TV.
The strike could cause delays in the repair and installation; Verizon said that, despite having the management and retirees to cover workers on strike as a contingency plan.
“Tens of thousands of Verizon managers and other staff have been trained to carry out emergency work,” said Verizon spokesman Richard Young. “They are trained in various functions, including repairs to the network-making, customer service, billing, back office support and other tasks.”
Verizon says its fixed line business has declined over the last decade, and as a result is asking employees to contribute to their health plans, among other concessions. The company says it is willing to work with the unions to reach an agreement that meets the needs of all parties. “We have important issues on the table and are willing to negotiate,” said Young. “However, the unions were not willing to negotiate something that is fundamental.”
Verizon’s fixed line business may be struggling, but overall the company has made billions of dollars in recent years, the political director of CWA Bob Master said.
“A company with such benefits, where CEO Ivan Seidenberg made 300 times the average worker’s salary – which made $ 18 million and last year alone – to demand radical cuts that have put on the table is scandalous and unacceptable, “said the Master.
In a statement on its website, the unions said Verizon has already won and 6 billion in net profits this year.
“We are telling them it’s time to get serious about trading, trading in a constructive way and back off of these attacks on jobs of the middle class,” said the Master.
Some Verizon workers on the picket line in Manhattan said the attack was a last resort.
“Hey, nobody wants to go on strike,” said Al Russo Verizon worker. “But unfortunately, when you have to make your point you have to do what you do.”
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