This week, CWA President Chris Shelton wrote to American Airlines CEO Doug Parker to draw attention to American Airlines subsidiary Envoy agents' personal stories about how they are struggling to make ends meet, and urged Parker to bargain a fair contract with the agents in the New Year.
This holiday season, Envoy passenger service agents have been making sure passengers know about their fight for a fair contract with family-supporting wages by distributing flyers asking passengers to donate to their local food banks. With Envoy agents being paid as little as $9.48 an hour, many of them rely on food banks to put food on the table.
"I am not writing to urge you to donate to the food banks," Shelton wrote to Parker. "You have the power to provide a far better and lasting solution beyond the holiday season. I urge you to use your authority to finally reach a contract at the Envoy bargaining table with living wages for all your Envoy employees."
The next bargaining session is set for January 22.
AT&T Midwest and AT&T Legacy T
CWA is calling on Congress to investigate how AT&T and other major corporations are spending the enormous tax cut benefits they received from the 2018 tax bill. CWA President Chris Shelton sent a letter this week to incoming Chair of the Ways and Means Committee Congressman Richard Neal (D-Mass.), urging him to hold hearings on why companies like AT&T continue to cut jobs despite the promises they made in order to get the tax bill passed.
CWA President Chris Shelton writes in the letter, "I write in full support of your promise to hold hearings on the $1.5 trillion tax cut forced through last year. CWA respectfully requests that your hearings and oversight efforts include an investigation into what major corporations such as AT&T are doing with their windfall from the tax cuts, following unfulfilled promises to American workers on wages and jobs."
Before the Republican tax bill passed, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson pledged $1 billion in tax savings toward creating "7,000 good jobs for the middle class." Instead, ongoing layoffs, including a new round of call center closures in the Midwest announced last week, have compounded workers' concerns about the company's practice of shifting work to low-wage overseas contractors, which many believe is hurting the quality of service and damaging AT&T's brand.
Shelton joined CWA District 4 Vice President Linda L. Hinton, Telecommunications & Technologies Vice President Lisa Bolton, and the Bargaining Chairs of the two committees on a town hall call this week to answer member questions, and to talk about ways for members to mobilize for a fair contract in 2019.
Employees at the Casper Star-Tribune, a daily newspaper in Wyoming, have ratified their first collective bargaining agreement with Lee Enterprises after eight months of negotiations. The agreement guarantees raises for the entire unit this year and next year, sets a minimum salary, and provides improvements in severance, layoff provisions, overtime requirements, and more.