AT&T/T-Mobile Deal Will Benefit Workers and Build Out Broadband
AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile USA is good news. AT&T will build out broadband to provide service to 95 percent of the country and workers at T-Mobile will benefit from a management record of neutrality in organizing.
The merger of AT&T and T-Mobile spectrum will improve AT&T's network and quality, along with the job security of CWA members.
In just the past two days since the public announcement was made, a new wave of T-Mobile workers is looking to have a real voice at their company.
CWA and ver.di, the German union that represents workers at T-Mobile and parent company Deutsche Telekom, formed TU to represent workers on both sides of the Atlantic. The forum at www.tuworkers.org is buzzing, and CWA organizers are providing workers with information about just how to get a union voice.
The acquisition must be approved by regulators; that process may take a year. But now, there is the opportunity for a fresh start for T-Mobile workers who currently work in an atmosphere of management fear and intimidation.
"This announcement is a positive development, both for the future of broadband in the US and Germany, and for the employees of T-Mobile USA in particular, given AT&T's record in respect of fundamental workers' rights," said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow.
UNI General Secretary Philip Jennings said, "We will continue our global union efforts for Deutsche Telekom to sign a Global Agreement with UNI to ensure all its workers around the world have the right to join a union and bargain collectively."
More Benefits to the Deal
AT&T and T-Mobile use the same GSM technology. With the benefit of shared spectrum, that's a big advantage for consumers over Sprint, the other company that was looking to buy T-Mobile.
Had the Sprint deal gone through, T-Mobile customers would, at the very least, have had to buy a new phone to use the Sprint network. The AT&T deal is debt-free and that means resources are available for investment not only in wireless broadband but in the critical wireline broadband buildout needed to connect anchor institutions like schools, hospitals and libraries in our communities.
The global labor movement has been a huge part of this campaign, with UNI Global Union and the International Trade Union Confederation working with CWA and ver.di to push forward on workers' rights for T-Mobile workers.