AT&T, CWA Make Peace In the Midwest

July 15th, 2009 by · 5 Comments

According to various reports, AT&T (NYSE:T, news, filings) and the Communications Workers of America (CWA) have finally broken out the peace pipes.  Not everywhere though, just in the Midwest for some 18,500 workers.  The new 3 year contract appears to be a compromise, with workers getting pay increases but also agreeing to pay more for health insurance.  It’s not a done deal yet of course, union must vote on whether to accept the new contract first.  But I suspect everyone is rather tired of this by now, and if they were going to strike they probably would have done so already.

How about the other 100K or so union employees that aren’t part of this deal?  I’ll bet that if this contract goes through, a similar one will quickly be on the table for the rest.  There were several points at which I thought everything might break down and a strike would happen, but somehow they managed to not let the process run that far out of control.  Both sides pushed hard, but neither really wanted war.  Any CWA members out there?  Was this victory, defeat, or stalemate?

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5 Comments So Far

  • JP says:

    This was neither in my opinion, The priorities are set by the membership. They obviously managed to agree to their major issues, but probalby have lost much. This district is unique, compared to the others, and would not suspect the others to give in so easy. In my district, for example, We have suffered a great deal of loses in the last two contracts on healthcare, but gained in other issues. Although some members still don’t feel the premium, they pay with co pays, and out of pocket limits that are high, as well as what the company saved when we bargained for our staff to administer parts of the plan. We are determined to stay where we are this time due to the company’s increasing profits every quarter. They are not hurting at all due to the economy, in fact, revenue per household is currently UP ! Things have only gotten better for att, and they want to contract out jobs and degrade our current contract that took many years to negotiate.

  • JP says:

    Please visit for more information.

  • Me says:

    BY THE WAY, for all you guys that are complaining about the union……You are obviously not involving yourselves with the functions of the union. Do you even attend meetings?
    Before negotioations commence, a bargaining task force meeting takes place. This is to discuss issues that have caused problems in the past, and prioritize your suggestions.It also decides and directs the bargaining team what issues are strike issues…. all members should recieve bargaining suggestion forms prior to negotiations. VERY few are ever returned to the union. That was your voice. Then the suggestions are covered at a meeting, and then each local membership should speak out, then appoint who should attend the BTF meeting to represent their interests. Here was your voice as well. Then at the meeting all these things are done, given what the membership has provided. Shame on you for not involving yourself and doing nothing.
    I would suspect that the bargaining team for district 4 would not strike, if they met the issues that the MEMBERSHIP ultimatly decided were strike issues. All issues are prioritized 2 or 3 times before the final product is reached.
    So please consider this before you blame anyone. However, I do agree that Dist 4 should have held on this all contracts were in the same place. Att has been playing the game very well, and has been putting this together for years. I believe that the most important issues are not really healthcare at this point, but protecting future work, so that we can come back to the table in better times. Times are definitly tough for your union. Please stand united to get through these difficult times so that we can move on and do a better job next time. (no, im not a cwa leader). Without the union, you would be one of those posting here that are putting you down about how good you have it, and how bad they have it. You have these things because you have a union voice. Without that, you would be without. Just like them. If more workers had the oppurtunity for a union, they would think differently, and better conditions would prevail; ultimatly having a better economy. Some people just can’t understand because they haven’t been here. Stand united. Don’t let the negatives in this forum take away your determination for a better life for yourselves. You will usually only hear from the very few that always feel negative, and don’t really understand how democracy works.

    Stay strong, stay united. Weve got a lonnng, HARD road ahead, and att is definitly attempting to break us, DON’T LET EM, as well as those here on the outside who believe they have the answers. The union isn’t perfect but its better off here. Don’t wait for someone else to make a difference–YOU ARE THAT SOMEONE ELSE!!

    P.S You can do it, and i am not a dummy !

  • D6 Member says:

    Unfortunately the Midwest has been hit buy harder times than the rest of the country. With this economy the Midwest has suffered higher layoffs and job loss. This has played a big roll in thier agreement with the company. They are fighting on a tougher field than the rest of the districts in CWA.
    At&t has already posted profits over $6.2 billion for the year, yet the compare themselves to the big 3 automakers. If that is the case Obama should see about replacing at&t’s CEO like he did General Motors. I doubt many feelings would be hurt.
    The fact is this is a very profitable company unlike many these days. They should be stepping up and doing more to help the economy and the middle class by providing better jobs. They should be helping with the unemployment problems here in america by bringing jobs back to the USA. They should quit farming out work in the USA to contractors coming from other countries to under cut the American contractor’s.
    There are a lot of things this company could be doing to improve this economy, but instead the CEO and board of director’s prefer to line their pockets off the sweat of those who built this company.
    I am prepared to walk against at&t to maintain my standard of living and to force this company to bring jobs back to the millions of people standing in line here in the United States to have one. This is much bigger than 100,000 people, this is about millions.

  • Term OPT in D3 says:

    Are there any term employees from D4 here who can answer ths question?…Did any term in D4 got made permanent?…. and if so what percentage?…

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