Sep 2, 2021 - New TV Ad Features IUE-CWA Members Demanding Good, Green Union Jobs and other news

September 2, 2021

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Bargaining Update

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CWA Reaches Agreement with AT&T on DirecTV

Under the terms of an agreement reached with AT&T, CWA members who are employed by DirecTV will continue to be covered by existing collective bargaining contracts. CWA entered into effects bargaining with AT&T as a result of the announced spin-off of its U.S. video services into a stand-alone company. The spin-off was completed on August 2 with the new independent DirecTV now co-owned by AT&T and TPG Capital, a private equity firm.

The agreement also ensures vesting of pension and 401(k) balances for unvested employees and provides priority rehiring consideration for former AT&T employees who transitioned to DirecTV. Details of the agreement are available at cwa-union.org/news/cwa-directv-effects-bargaining-final-report.

“This agreement is a big first step in ensuring that members are protected during this transition,” said CWA President Chris Shelton. “I am grateful for the bargaining committee and the workers who supported them for staying strong during negotiations and achieving this victory.”

The Bargaining Committee has now entered into negotiations with the new DirecTV and will continue fighting to make sure our members' rights are protected at their new employer.

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Planned Picket by TNG-CWA Members Forces Fortune Magazine to Postpone Prestigious Conference

Workers at Fortune Magazine, members of the NewsGuild of New York (TNG-CWA Local 31003), threatened to picket the magazine’s prestigious CEO Initiative conference, which forced executives to postpone the event. The conference, set for mid-September in Washington, D.C., would have been the magazine’s first in-person event in several years.

The planned action was in response to the lack of progress in contract negotiations. Instead of engaging in good faith bargaining, the company has refused to move on severance pay, protections from outsourcing, diversity, and source protection. The company also insists on continuing to evaluate workers based on traffic and quotas.

Prior to the postponement, the magazine had scrubbed several prominent speakers, apparently out of fear that the speakers would refuse to cross a picket line.

Members of the Fortune Union are determined to continue to strengthen their bargaining position and fight for a fair contract.

Read more here.


Health Care Heroes Fight for Better Staffing, Safe Working Conditions, and More

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Hundreds of health care workers from CWA Locals 1122, 1133, and 1168 came out in force last Wednesday in Buffalo, N.Y., to demand improved working conditions, better staffing, fair wages, and more at Mercy, St. Joseph’s, and Kenmore Mercy hospitals.

This action was organized ahead of the current contract’s expiration on September 30 to raise concerns about low staffing at all three of the Catholic Health hospitals, stagnant wages, and unsafe working conditions. Members of other unions, elected officials, and mayoral candidates also joined the picket in solidarity with our healthcare heroes.

The Buffalo News published CWA Local 1168 member Heather Lawrence’s editorial outlining what’s at stake earlier this week. Check it out here.


Health care workers participate in an information picket outside Mercy Hospital in Buffalo, N.Y.


IUE-CWA Members Launch Campaign for Good Green Jobs in Schenectady

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A coalition of environmental groups, community advocates, and IUE-CWA members launched a public awareness campaign this week calling on elected leaders and General Electric to bring needed economic investment and good green union jobs to Schenectady, N.Y.

“New York lawmakers and General Electric have an unprecedented opportunity right now to bet big on New York workers, and step up to be the definitive leaders on green domestic manufacturing,” said IUE-CWA President Carl Kennebrew. “By harnessing the power of wind, we can put laid-off manufacturing workers in our own communities back to work and build a green future that ends the dangerous impacts of outsourcing our essential infrastructure. New York is at a crossroads – and Schenectady workers are ready to get to work.”

At one time, General Electric employed over 30,000 workers in Schenectady. That number is now less than 1,000, with many of the jobs being shipped overseas, most recently to Poland.

The campaign includes billboards, print, digital, and television ads.

Learn more at GreenJobsGreenEconomy.org.


Community Leaders and Workers Fight For Racial Justice at Denver Health

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Last Thursday, Denver Health Workers United/CWA Local 7799 members joined faith and labor leaders to publicly pray for racial justice at Denver Health.

This event was organized in response to growing concerns about racial injustice at the health system. Systemic discrimination against African American employees in disciplinary and termination decisions, forcing a captive audience meeting on Black and Latinx custodial workers discouraging them from forming a union, and retaliation against employees who raised concerns about pandemic safety and systemic racism, are just a few of the examples of racial injustice the workers and community leaders are fighting against.

The public prayer called on the Denver Health and Hospital Authority’s Board of Directors to enact three pillars of change: honestly reckoning with racial injustice, accepting community accountability, and respecting workers rights.


Faith leaders and Denver Health Workers United/CWA Local 7799 members come together to offer a public prayer for racial justice at Denver Health.


Election Update

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California

Last Wednesday, CWA local leaders and activists in California hosted a virtual town hall with Governor Gavin Newsom and participated in a phone bank to encourage Californians to vote NO in the recall election. CWAers across the state have been mobilizing to ensure a victory for working people in this critical election.

“The Republican and the right wing folks, they have an echo chamber and they’re ginned up on this,” said Governor Newsom. “Their enthusiasm is off the charts to take the keys to the fifth largest economy, the bluest state in America where our values are quite literally at risk if we don’t push back and vote NO on this recall.”

To join the phone bank on Mondays and Wednesdays at 5pm PT, sign up here.

Watch Governor Newsom’s full remarks here.


Governor Gavin Newsom speaking to CWAers in California during a virtual town hall.


CWA Members March for Voting Rights

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CWA Local 7026 Secretary-Treasurer Cecilia Valdez (right) with AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler at the Phoenix, Ariz., “Rally for Voting Rights” event.

CWAers joined thousands of activists in cities across the country to demand federal voting rights protections on Saturday, the 58th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic March on Washington. The rallies were part of an ongoing nationwide effort to fight against a wave of discriminatory and restrictive state laws threatening access to voting.

Senators must make protecting voting rights the top priority when they return from recess next week. We will continue to mobilize to put pressure on the Senate to enact critical pieces of legislation to ensure voting rights protections.


AFA-CWA Flight Attendants Assist with Evacuation Flights

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AFA-CWA Flight Attendants have been assisting in transporting members of the U.S military, American citizens, and other Afghan evacuees from military bases and other staging areas in the Middle East and Europe to the U.S., as part of the Department of Defense’s Civil Reserve Air Fleet program. Read more here.


Upcoming Events in Honor of the Heroes of 9/11

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This September 11 marks the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. CWA members will be participating in a variety of events to remember those who lost their lives on that day and to honor the workers who participated in the response, recovery, and rebuilding.

Remembrance Events

AFA-CWA has posted a list of remembrance events taking place across the country at neverforget.afa-cwa.net/september-11-events.

CWA Local 1101 September 11th Virtual Video Announcement

On Saturday, September 11, at 1 pm EST, CWA Local 1101 is hosting a virtual showing of their new video "We Have Not Forgotten," which highlights the role CWA Local 1101 members played in rebuilding the communications network in lower Manhattan after the horrific attacks on 9/11.

You can watch the event on Facebook Live, or on the CWA District 1 YouTube channel.

9/11 20th Anniversary Live Stream Event: Impact of 9/11 Toxins 20 Years Later and the Federal Response

This two-day program will feature journalists from NewsGuild-CWA as well as health professionals, legal experts, and elected officials to discuss 9/11 health impacts and the 20 year fight for 9/11-related healthcare and compensation.

The event will be live-streamed from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and will be held on Thursday, September 9, from 9:30 am to 12 pm EST, and 2 pm to 3:30 pm EST, as well as on Friday, September 10, from 9:30 am to 1 pm EST.

To see the full schedule of panelists and to get information about how to view this event, click here.