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Another 5,000 DirecTV Workers Joined CWA in March

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DirecTV workers continue to say "CWA Yes."

Here are just the latest groups of workers to sign up for CWA membership:

In District 3, at La Vergne and Knoxville, Tenn., locations, 201 DirecTV/AT&T technicians have joined our union, with 80 percent of them signing CWA membership cards at the same time.

Working with the La Vergne techs were Local 3808 local organizer Darlene Stone, Wire Technician Jordan Demonbruen and Local 3808 executive board member Jose Zuniga. In Knoxville, Local 3805 President Ray Mehaffey was assisted by executive vice president Walter 'Rocky' Holloway and Wire Technician and UVerse Representative Scott Hutchison.

In District 6, the 985 workers at the Tulsa, Okla., DirecTV customer care center now have representation by CWA Local 6012.

Malena Ponder works at the Tulsa customer care center. She said, "We need CWA to represent us because we are playing with a new set of rules now. We need to make sure that we have a voice and that those rules are upheld for everyone. We need the consistency and transparency that only a consolidated workforce can provide. With an almost 70 year relationship, CWA is that consolidated workforce. They are our voice and AT&T's conscience."

Byron Hopkins, another customer care center worker, said, "CWA already has a long time relationship with AT&T and as a DTV employee I want CWA to be my voice."

Another 923 workers – technicians, installers, warehouse and administrative employees in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas – also gained CWA representation, following a campaign by 16 CWA locals.

The locals worked to make contacts and build committees for several months, then started membership card signing. Dozens of local officers, organizers and activists joined in this big effort. Leading the campaign were: Local 6012, President Chad Barnhill and Organizer LareRonita Ratcliff; Local 6016, President Jay Albertson and EVP/Organizer Diana Brooks; Local 6128, President Darlene Kirchgessner; Local 6200, President Paul Laughlin; Local 6203, President David Patton; Local 6210, President Dwayne Webb; Local 6222, Campaign Lead Yolanda Anderson and VP Ray Rodriguez; Local 6300, Organizers Erin Gagnon and Gordon Smith; Local 6312, President Jerry Carpenter; Local 6314, President Ed Stephens and Staff Representative Kara Hutchason; Local 6360, President Joe Blanco and VP Jeff Hayes; Local 6401, President Jason Burns; Local 6402, President Carole Russell; Local 6502, President Mary Ann Hopkins; Local 6505, President Michael Redmond, and Local 6508, President George West.

There was great support throughout the district, from District Organizing Coordinator Tammy Chaffee in Kansas and Missouri, Area Director for Organizing Judy Graves who coordinated the campaign, and District 6 Vice President Claude Cummings who supported the campaign in every way, meeting early-on with DirecTV workers and negotiating the card check and neutrality agreement details with the company.

Top row: Workers at the Tulsa customer care center sign up for a voice with CWA Local 6012; Ed Kimpel, a tech from La Vergne, Tenn.

Second row: Byron Hopkins, Tulsa; Dave Francis, Fenton, Mo.; Justyn Gonzales, Blue Springs, Mo.; Malena Ponder, Tulsa.

Third row: Nighttime signups in Knoxville, Tenn.; signups in Houston.

Fourth row: More nighttime signups in Knoxville; workers talking CWA in Houston.