Washington, D.C. – Members of the Communications Workers of America at Verizon Communications voted overwhelmingly to authorize CWA leaders to call a strike if a fair contract cannot be reached. Ninety-one (91) percent of voting Verizon members approved the strike authorization.
Contract negotiations currently are underway on behalf of about 35,000 CWA-represented workers at Verizon, with the contract expiring effective 12:01 a.m. on Sunday Aug. 7. Members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, bargaining with CWA, are holding a separate strike authorization vote.
Negotiations are continuing, and CWA and IBEW members are mobilizing at worksites and at public events, building more support for a fair contract. CWA and IBEW members will rally on Saturday, July 30, at a huge event outside Verizon headquarters at 140 West Street in NYC, beginning at 11 a.m.
Despite being one of the most profitable companies in the U.S., (Verizon earned $19.5 billion in profits over the last four years and paid its top five executives over $258 million in the same time frame), Verizon is demanding major concessions across the board in workers’ health care, benefits, pensions and more. Instead of creating and keeping good jobs in local communities, Verizon has been contracting out work out of the region and offshoring jobs to Mexico, the Philippines and other countries. Verizon also got a $1.3 billion federal tax rebate from the government despite its huge profits.
“These negotiations are all about good jobs,” said CWA District 1 Vice President Chris Shelton. “Companies like Verizon should be investing in rebuilding the American economy, not contributing to the destruction of good, middle-class jobs.”
CWA District 2-13 Vice President Ed Mooney said the strong strike vote shows that “CWA members are determined to fight back against Verizon’s corporate greed and bargain a fair contract, one that reflects workers’ contributions to Verizon’s success.”
Read more at http://www.cwa-union.org/verizon.