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What We Do Well

What We Do WellSince our last convention, we rallied, mobilized, organized and picketed. At Verizon, thousands of us embarked on an historic 49-day strike and AT&T Mobility members held our first ever strike. IUE-CWA members stood strong one day longer than Momentive in a 105-day strike. Our bargaining teams negotiated contracts covering tens of thousands of CWA members across our industries and sectors. Thousands of workers in the airline industry, telecom and wireless, customer service and more gained a CWA voice. We engaged in civil disobedience, marched for democracy and civil rights, and demanded pension fairness. We’re proud of our solidarity and our union.

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Since 2015, we’ve bargained hundreds of contracts covering more than 200,000 CWA members in every sector of our union. These are some of the highlights.

Major Bargaining Currently Underway

  • AT&T Mobility Orange Contract, covering 21,000 CWA members in 36 states.
  • State of New Jersey, covering 43,000 public workers.
  • Frontier Communications, covering 1,600 workers in West Virginia.
  • Washington Post, covering members of Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild-CWA Local 32035.
  • Mesa Airlines, covering 1,000 Flight Attendants, and Cathay Pacific Airlines, covering 450 Flight Attendants.
  • Envoy and Piedmont Airlines, covering a combined 8,000 passenger service agents.
  • University of California, covering 10,000 research and technical workers.
  • AT&T West, covering 17,000 workers in California and Nevada.

First Contracts at DIRECTV
CWA members at DIRECTV nationwide – technicians, customer service representatives, administrative and warehouse workers – ratified first contracts. More than 10,000 DIRECTV workers have joined CWA since 2015.

Historic Strike at Verizon
Nearly 40,000 workers stood strong for 49 days in the largest strike in recent history, fighting back against the company’s offshoring and demands for job cuts. CWA members at six Verizon Wireless retail stores won their first-ever contract, and Verizon Wireless technicians in New York gained a new contract.

United Airlines
AFA-CWA United Flight Attendants from around the world ratified an industry-leading contract covering 25,000 at United, Continental and Continental Micronesia, now covered by one contract. Flight Attendants held informational picket lines and mobilized for many months as part of their fair contract fight.

GE Appliance Park
Members of IUE-CWA Local 83761 ratified an agreement with Haier Group covering 4,000 workers at Appliance Park in Louisville, Ky.

In District 7, members ratified a contract with CenturyLink (formerly Qwest) covering 13,000 workers. In District 6, members ratified a first contract for a newly organized unit of CenturyLink workers in Killeen, Tex.

Doña Ana County Sheriff's Department
Deputies, sergeants, and investigators in the Doña Ana County (New Mexico) Sheriff's Department, members of CWA Local 7911, gained a new contract that provided pay increases and other improvements.

One Day Longer at Momentive
About 700 members of IUE-CWA Locals 81359 and 81380 at Momentive Performance Materials in Waterford, N.Y., and Willoughby, Ohio, stood strong for 105 days, fighting for a fair contract. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was directly involved in the negotiations and many elected officials joined Momentive workers on the picket line.

AT&T Southeast
In District 3, CWA members ratified contracts covering 28,000 workers at AT&T Southeast, AT&T Utility Operations, and BellSouth Billing.

AT&T Southwest
AT&T Southwest District 6 entered into early bargaining for the second consecutive time and ratified a contract covering 20,000 members.

AT&T Mobility (Purple)
CWA members ratified a contract covering 9,400 workers in District 6.

AT&T National Internet Contract
CWAers ratified the AT&T National Internet Contract that provided life-changing wages and benefits for 2,000 workers.

AT&T Mobility (National Benefit Plan)
In 2016, CWA bargained and members ratified a four-year National Bargained Benefit Plan covering 43,000 AT&T Mobility workers across all Districts.

NABET-CWA members ratified a contract with ABC/Disney, covering 3,000 workers at ABC Network operations, ABC Sports operations, and the four network owned television stations in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

American Airlines
Passenger service agents ratified a first contract with American Airlines covering 15,000 agents. The contract includes substantial improvements, especially for home-based customer service agents. Agents organized for nearly 20 years to get their CWA voice.

CWA members of Locals 3371 and 3372 in Kentucky ratified a contract covering 250 workers at Windstream. CWA members of Local 6171 ratified an agreement at Windstream, covering 420 workers. Members of Local 7470 in Nebraska saved workers’ health care plan and integrated members covered by the core and system contracts into one contract.

East Orange, N.J., Municipal Workers
Members of Local 1077 ratified a contract covering 400 municipal workers that provided for a $15 hourly minimum wage.

New Jersey
CWA negotiated contracts covering public workers across the state, including agencies in Camden City and County, Gloucester County, East Orange, and Ocean County. Locals 1014 and 1085 beat back privatization of emergency 911 dispatchers and county prison nurses.

The Nation
Members of NewsGuild-CWA Local 31003 ratified a six-year contract with the Nation that provides for four months of parental leave, among other gains.

District 6 enters the seventh year of bargaining a first-year contract for North Richland Hills and Farmers Branch, Tex. Members defeated two decertification elections and won NLRB charges against DISH including bargaining in bad faith.

Members in Pittsburgh ratified a four-year contract covering 300 technicians and other workers that included wage increases and additional wage adjustments.

General Electric
IUE-CWA members ratified a four-year agreement at GE, covering about 10,000 workers.

CWA gained a seat on the Avaya Creditor Committee to safeguard the interests of 550 active members and 4,000 retirees while the company goes through bankruptcy.

CWA members at OFS in Sturbridge, Mass., and Norcross, Ga., ratified a contract covering 300 workers.

CWA members of Local 1102 in Staten Island, N.Y., ratified a four-year agreement that beat back concession demands and provides for wage increases, among other improvements.

Vail Resorts
Members of the Park City Professional Ski Patrol Association/CWA 7781 ratified a first contract with Vail Resorts by a two-to-one margin.

Red Cross
Members of CWA and seven other unions ratified a first-ever National Red Cross contract covering 5,000 health care workers in 24 states.

Monroe Free Library
Members of CWA Local 1120 unanimously ratified a first contract with the Monroe Free Library in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Halifax Chronicle Herald
Members of the Halifax Typographical Union/ CWA Canada Local 30130, remain on strike after walking out on Jan. 23, 2016, at the Halifax Chronicle Herald. Management demanded steep cuts in wages and benefits from newsroom and support staff.

NBC Universal
In August 2015, NABET-CWA members ratified a contract covering 2,700 staff and daily hires in studios and in the field for NBC News, NBC Sports, and NBC Entertainment. The contract also covers building maintenance, air conditioning and plant maintenance personnel, staging services personnel, and couriers at network and TV station operations in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.

Frontier California, Frontier Texas and Missouri
In District 9, CWA members at the former Verizon California ratified a contract with Frontier. In District 6, CWA members ratified a contract with Frontier covering more than 2,000 workers.

In District 6, members of Local 6215 ratified a contract at TYCO.

KRGC Television
Members of Local 6314 ratified a three-year agreement at KRGC Television.

Omni Air International
AFA-CWA Flight Attendants ratified a first contract covering 300 at Omni Air.

Catholic Health
Members of Locals 1133 and 1168 ratified four-year agreements covering 2,500 workers at three hospitals in upstate New York. The contracts cover registered nurses and service, technical, and clerical workers at Mercy Hospital; registered nurses at Sisters of Charity Hospital, St. Joseph Campus; and technical workers at Kenmore Mercy Hospital.

NYC Traffic Enforcement
New York City traffic enforcement agents, members of Local 1182, ratified a seven-year contract with the City of New York covering 2,100 agents.

Frontier Rhinelander
CWA members at Frontier Rhinelander in Wisconsin ratified a contract.

Altice (Cablevision)
CWA reached a three-year contract extension with Altice improving wages, contracting of work, and job protections.

Kaleida Health
Members of Local 1168 in Buffalo, N.Y., ratified a contract with Kaleida Health covering 7,500 workers, members of three unions.

New Flyer
Members of Local 7304 in Crookston and St. Cloud, Minn., ratified contracts.

Public Broadcasting Service
Members of NABET-CWA Local 52031 ratified a contract at PBS that compensates workers harmed by wage discrimination at Virginia production facilities.

Restaurant Opportunities Center United
Workers at ROC ratified a three-year contract covering workers in seven cities. They are members of Local 38010.

State of Missouri
Members of Local 6355 ratified a three-year agreement with the Missouri Departments of Social Services and Health and Senior Services covering 6,000 social workers and public health workers.

Spirit Airlines
AFA-CWA Flight Attendants ratified a five-year agreement covering 2,200 at Spirit Airlines.

Middlesex County, N.J., Board of Social Services
Local 1082 members in New Brunswick, N.J., ratified a four-year contract covering 300 social services workers.

West River Telecom
Members of Local 7301 in North Dakota fought back against management demands to cut pensions and benefits and ratified a contract.

Digital First Media
NewsGuild-CWA members in 12 newspaper bargaining units ratified contracts covering 870 workers. The units are: The Denver Post, The Mercury News, East Bay Times, Monterey Herald, St. Paul Pioneer Press, Macomb Daily and The Daily Tribune, Kingston Daily Freeman, Pottstown Mercury, Norristown Times-Herald, The Delaware County Times, and The Trentonian.

VICE Canada
Members of the Canadian Media Guild ratified a first contract at VICE, an online journal, covering 170 workers. VICE also includes a network of digital channels, a production studio, a magazine, an in-house creative services agency, and a TV network.

FOX Owned Television Stations
Following lengthy negotiations in Detroit (3 years), Chicago (5 years), and Los Angeles (6.5 years), technicians at FOX-owned and operated television stations have ratified new collective bargaining agreements. The separate negotiations in these cities had one singular theme: excessive concessionary demands placed upon the Union by the parent Company.

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In the past two years, more than 20,000 new members, across every industry and sector, have joined CWA.

More than 8,000 Call Center workers, technicians, administrative, and warehouse workers joined CWA since AT&T acquired DIRECTV in 2015. The 800 workers at the DIRECTV call center in Huntsville, Ala, were the first to say, "CWA Yes."

Norwegian Air
A unit of 400 U.S.-based Norwegian Flight Attendants voted to join AFA-CWA, rejecting an intense campaign of management interference and union-busting.

Cathay Pacific
Some 450 U.S.-based Cathay Pacific Airlines Flight Attendants voted overwhelmingly to join AFA-CWA.

T-Mobile workers established Local 6457 as workers continue to organize and elect national stewards. Working with our German union partner ver.di, TU members are fighting management’s attempt to set up a company union. Workers have gained fairer work scheduling policies and took on management threats to fire workers who want to speak out on the job about workplace conditions. The NLRB handed down several decisions calling out T-Mobile for these and other illegal actions.

Envoy/American Airlines
The 4,500 passenger and fleet service agents at 102 Envoy stations voted for CWA representation.

AT&T Mobility
A group of 71 retail employees, formerly with Alltel Mobile in South Carolina, joined CWA Locals 3716 and 3719. Twenty-two network engineers in San Juan, Puerto Rico, joined CWA Local 3010.

ABC and NBC Sports
Over the past three years, more than 1,500 technicians and other workers who broadcast sports joined NABET-CWA.

Cricket Retail Workers
Since the beginning of 2015, 1,256 Cricket retail workers at 165 retail stores nationwide have joined CWA.

Editorial staff of the legal news website voted for representation by TNG-CWA Local 31003, facing down an intense anti-union campaign. The Law360 staff includes more than 130 reporters, editors, news assistants, and apprentices nationwide.

Open Society Foundation
Administrative and program staff at the Open Society Foundation voted for representation by CWA Local 1180. The 209 workers are located in New York and Baltimore.

Delaware Department of Health & Social Services
The 25 Senior Social Workers with the Delaware Department of Health & Social Services/ Division of Services for Aging and Adults with Physical Disabilities overwhelmingly voted for representation with CWA Local 13101 in Delaware.

PAE Aviation
Some 59 workers at PAE Aviation, a government service contractor that maintains aircraft at Naval Air Station Key West, Fla., voted for representation by IUE-CWA Local 89119.

ASIG, Orlando International Airport
Baggage encoders employed by ASIG at the Orlando Airport voted to join CWA Local 3108. The unit includes more than 113 workers.

Bo Robinson Assessment and Treatment Center
A group of 21 lead workers at this treatment center in Trenton, N.J., voted for representation by CWA Local 1040. The local now represents 86 workers at the center, including operations counselors and shift supervisors.

Lakeland, Fla., Ledger
The 25 workers at Polk County's daily newspaper, the Ledger, voted for representation by CWA Local 3108.

Foreign Policy
Some 22 news workers at Foreign Policy magazine voted for representation by TNG-CWA Local 32035.

Monticello Aqueduct and Yonkers Raceway
Twenty technicians employed by International Game Technology who fix gaming machines at Monticello Aqueduct and Yonkers Raceways in New York voted for representation by CWA Local 1101.

Corus Entertainment
The 49 broadcast, technology, and other television workers at Corus Quay in Toronto, Ont., voted to join the Canadian Media Guild/CWA Canada.

Utah Ski Patrollers
Some 191 ski patrol workers voted for representation by CWA Local 7781.

The Guardian US
Some 45 writers and staff at the online newspaper, the Guardian US, voted for TNG-CWA Local 31222 representation.

Red Cross
Some 55 workers at the American Red Cross in Albany, N.Y., voted to join CWA Local 1118; 55 workers in Syracuse, N.Y., joined Local 1123.

Al Jazeera America
Some 51 digital journalists at Al Jazeera voted for representation by TNG-CWA Local 31003.

The 110 workers at USIC, a contractor that performs utility location work for Verizon, Con Ed, and other companies, voted to join CWA Local 1101.

Early Childhood Educators
A total of 338 workers – early childhood education staff at The Leaguers, Inc., in Essex and Union Counties, N.J., Unified Vailsburg Services Organization, and La Casa de Don Pedro in Newark – voted for CWA Local 1037 representation. The group includes teachers, assistant teachers, administrative assistants, receptionists, drivers, family workers, janitors, cooks, substitutes, and wraparound staff.

Some 450 Flight Attendants at GoJet voted for AFA-CWA representation.

Air Transport International
Thirty-six Flight Attendants at Air Transport International voted to join AFA-CWA.

AT&T Global
Some 49 Customer Service employees at AT&T Global in Denver voted for representation by CWA Local 7750.

Sarasota (Florida) Herald Tribune
Some 39 news employees voted to join CWA Local 3108.

Matrix Inc.
Seventy technicians at this growing inter-connect company voted to join CWA Local 1101.

Dollar/Thrifty Rental Car
A group of 83 workers at Dollar/Thrifty Rental Car in Los Angeles voted for representation by CWA Local 9003.

St. Giles School
A group of 24 teachers at St. Giles English Language School in San Francisco voted to join NewsGuild-CWA local 39521.

CMS Alarm
Some 40 technicians at CMS alarm monitoring voted to join CWA Local 9510.

VICE Canada
Some 150 employees across Canada voted to join the Canadian Media Guild, Local 30213. VICE Canada includes a network of digital channels, a production studio, a magazine, an in-house creative services agency, and a TV network.

The following highlight some of the smaller units where workers voted for CWA representation, including many that are part of CWA’s broader organizing strategy.

  • Nine CenturyLink technicians in southwest Minnesota voted unanimously for CWA Local 7203.
  • Eighteen installers at One Path, an AT&T Digital Life contractor, voted for CWA Local 9509.
  • Ten field technicians at AT&T Frederikstad and St. Thomas Cable in the U.S. Virgin Islands voted for CWA Local 3250.
  • Five Element Mobile employees in Wisconsin joined CWA Local 4603.
  • Thirteen Frontier Communications workers in New Holland, Penn., voted for CWA Local 13000.
  • Six Retail Sales Consultants at the only CenturyLink retail store in Texas voted for CWA representation.
  • Twelve New Partners Teleservices employees joined CWA Local 7212; nearly 150 have joined overall.
  • Eight editorial staff at Jacobin, a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based print and online magazine, joined NewsGuild-CWA Local 31003.
  • Seventeen workers in the Department of Public Works, Canandaigua, N.Y., voted for CWA Local 1170.
  • Five workers at GP Mobile, a T-Mobile authorized retail store in Lawrence, Kan., voted to join CWA Local 6457.
  • Eighteen Licensed Vocational Nurses at The Right Step, a residential rehab center in Wimberly, Tex., voted for CWA Local 6186.
  • Approximately 30 television technicians working for Chicago Access Network Television (CANTV) voted for representation and became members of NABET-CWA Local 54041.

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Since our last convention,CWAers mobilized for these nationwide campaigns and issues.

Stop the TPP
After five years of grassroots activism, including protests in nearly every state, CWA activists and our broad coalition of workers and unions, community and environmental groups, faith organizations, and many others, defeated the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. CWAers met with members of Congress and staff in Washington and their home districts, generated tens of thousands of hand-written letters and phone calls, and joined CWA’s TPP and boot camp training, convincing Members of Congress to abandon this bad deal for workers and communities.

Women’s March on Washington
Thousands of CWA women and men joined the million people who came to Washington, D.C., and rallied across the country the day after the presidential inauguration. Protestors stood together for justice and dignity for all and to protect our rights, our safety, and our communities. CWA President Chris Shelton told the crowd of CWAers, "Today is the first day of our fight, and we will win."

Stop Offshoring Call Center Jobs
The U.S. Call Center Worker and Consumer Protection Act was introduced in the House and Senate this year, to curb the off-shoring of good U.S. jobs and provide protections for workers and consumers. CWA customer service members collected petitions to Members of Congress at workplaces and rallied with congressional sponsors to build support in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Missouri, and other states.

Take on Wall Street
About 10,000 CWAers joined the initial telephone town hall call that launched the Take on Wall Street campaign. CWA activists are mobilizing to close the tax loophole that’s been a giveaway to hedge fund managers, for a tax on Wall Street speculation, and to keep the consumer safeguards enacted following the Wall Street meltdown in 2008. Hundreds of CWAers have joined one-day workshops and boot camps.

Bank Workers Take on Wells Fargo, Santander
In testimony, rallies and actions, CWA activists and the Committee for Better Banks spotlighted aggressive sales goals required by Wells Fargo that resulted in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and regulators levying record fines of $185 million against the bank. The CEO resigned after hearings on Capitol Hill made clear the extent of this abuse, and the bank was forced to change its practices. Santander Bank, where workers are joining CWA, was fined $10 million and ordered to stop enrolling customers in overdraft protection without their informed consent.

Safe Staffing Law in New York State
CWAers from Locals 1168 and 1133 and allies made calls, lobbied, and knocked on doors to win passage of the Safe Staffing for Quality Care Act in New York State.

Protection against Airport Rage
Passenger service agents won confirmation from the Department of Justice that they are covered under a federal law passed in the aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, that makes it a felony to assault workers at airports engaged in security related duties.

Texas Attacks on Public Workers
CWAers in Texas, who have beaten back "paycheck deception" measures, are gearing up for the special legislative session in July where the governor will again go after payroll deduction for union dues.

Leah’s Law
N.J. CWA members worked hard for passage of Leah’s Law, to better protect workers at the New Jersey Department of Children and Families. The law was passed by strong votes in the Assembly and Senate, but was vetoed by Governor Chris Christie. The bipartisan legislation was named for CWA Local 1038 member Leah Coleman who was stabbed more than 20 times by a deranged client in November 2014 and nearly lost her life.

Journey for Justice
America’s Journey for Justice covered nearly 1,000 miles from Selma, Ala., to Washington, D.C., as CWA members and leaders joined civil rights and community activists. The march focused on restoring voting rights that were stripped away by the U.S. Supreme Court’s Shelby decision.

CWA Pushes State Regulators on Verizon Customer Service
CWA pushed regulators in six states and Washington, D.C., to investigate the deterioration of Verizon's copper landline networks. CWA documented the company’s neglect in Pennsylvania, New York, and other states, and regulators held hearings and forced the company to make changes.

Democracy Awakening
Members of more than 300 groups filled the U.S. Capitol for Democracy Awakening. More than 80 CWA activists, including President Shelton, engaged in civil disobedience and were arrested as thousands demanded fair voting rights for all and an end to corporate control of our democracy. CWAers came by bus, van, and car from Birmingham, Ala.; Little Rock, Ark.; Rochester, N.Y.; Kansas City, Mo., and communities in New Jersey, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and Ohio.

Fight for $15
CWAers and allies took to the streets in hundreds of cities as momentum continued to build for a fair minimum wage and more. Activists demanded a union voice, paid sick days, fair scheduling, and a $15/hour minimum wage. Actions have been held in Minneapolis, New York, Houston, Albuquerque, Wichita, Raleigh, Dayton, Rochester, Denver, Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, Milwaukee, and other cities.

Nokia Alcatel-Lucent Pension Fight
CWA’s Telecommunications and Technologies Sector filed a lawsuit to stop the pension fund grab by Nokia. The company moved 20,000 retirees and $3 billion from the pension plan covering retired workers and surviving spouses into the underfunded management pension plan. This jeopardizes not only the future assets of retired workers but restricts the fund's ability to support retiree health care and other benefits, a required provision under the existing contract.

CWA Presidential E-poll
Ahead of Election 2016, CWA held the most democratic process of any union as members engaged in months of worksite membership meetings and online voting for the CWA presidential political endorsement process.

Fight for Clean Water in Flint
Members of CWA Locals 4009, 4013, 4034, 4123, and CWA staff joined hundreds of union and community supporters outside the state Capitol in Lansing, Mich., to protest the lead-poisoned water that has harmed the health of thousands of people, especially children, in Flint.

Fight for 10
Flight Attendants are keeping up their "Fight for 10." Unlike pilots and other cabin crews, federal regulations now only provide Flight Attendants with eight hours of rest after a 14-hour day, that, in reality, is five hours or less.

Stop Outsourcing in Tennessee
United Campus Workers/CWA Local 3865 activists and allies flooded the Tennessee State Capitol and are continuing their mobilization to protest Governor Bill Haslam's scheme to outsource all facilities maintenance, management, and security at state colleges and universities and other state institutions.

No Robots Allowed
CWA activists and grassroots allies forced the withdrawal of an anti-worker Secretary of Labor nominee. Andrew Puzder, the fast food CEO who prefers robots over workers, withdrew his nomination after rallies, phone calls to Senators, and protests nationwide.