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Unions, 112,500 AT&T workers ready to strike

updated 04:30 pm EDT, Mon March 23, 2009

AT&T union strike approved

The majority of the 112,500 unionized workers at AT&T gave their union leaders permission on Monday to call a strike during the negotiations for a new contract with their employer. Less than two weeks ago, a strike was predicted to be likely and is now one step closer to fruition, as the majority of the contracts in question for landline division employees expire on April 4th. AT&T, the largest employer of union workers, aims to have employees pay more of their healthcare costs, among other cuts in the contracts.

About 88 percent of the Communications Workers of America union members voted in favor of a possible strike instead of accepting the health care cuts. AT&T has been expecting such a move, as spokesperson Walt Sharp said the strike authorization is "expected and routine at this stage in the negotiations."

The company has previously mentioned that it takes precautions to continue service in the event of a strike but hasn't outlined its particular plans for this latest dispute.

by MacNN Staff




  1. TomSawyer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Are they high???

    With the economy in the toilet (thanks in large part to unions driving labor costs up and jobs overseas) these idiots are talking about walking out on their employer over cutbacks! Lemmings.

  1. jameshays

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Replace 'em

    Replace them with people who are willing to work. Many Employees are on sale right now.

  1. MeandmyMac

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Didn't Obama...

    Didn't Obama say that workers would be willing to work fewer hours in order for another worker to not loose their job and didn't Obama talk about sacrifice? Apparently Obama didn't meet up with any Communication Workers of America. Ot at least those CWA workers with AT&T. Apparently, their willingness to sacrifice, pay their fair share, keep working for the good of fellow employees and for the country doesn't hold up well with them! The Obama Plan - It's not new. It's not hope. And it's not change!

  1. msuper69

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Service can't get worse..

    so all these strikers will prove is that they aren't needed!

  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Two sides

    On one hand, you have unions trying to preserve the living standard of their members. During their contract negotiation, they use the usual weapons at their disposal, threat of strike being one of the more popular ones. These people HAVE jobs; AT&T is still making profits (i.e. isn't suffering nearly as much as others).

    On the other hand, we have a situation where many others are without work. And there's AT&T, fully aware of that. In other words, AT&T has hand here. They can easily say "If you don't like it, there are plenty of people who do". Unfortunately, this economic situation has created conditions under which even prosperous employers can keep slashing pay and benefits (thereby increasing their own profits) and get away with it. All they need to say is "Economy is bad!" and everyone is expected to sacrifice.

    I'm sure this is just an ordinary contract re-negotiation and will soon end. It just looks a bit different from today's perspective.

  1. shmoolie

    Joined: Dec 1969


    and this is news why?...

    Why is MacNN even reporting this? Would they do the same if PGE, the company that supplies my electricity for my computers went on strike? WGAF?

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Race to the bottom!

    Golden parachutes and excessive pay doesn't pay for itself ya know!

    Shareholder value!!!

    Employees are a drain on the company!

  1. afaby

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Unions don't care about u

    Way to ensure your future unemployment, union people. Guess you haven't been paying attention to the UAW's extortion of Ford and GM, and where that has led.

  1. bigjimid

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Unions are funny

    I like how all these unions think that they are some kind of golden child who won't be effected by the negative downturn in the economy.

    shmoolie - It was probably meant only to be on Electronista. But then they probably thought "Hey the iPhone is an ATT product, and if we don't link the article in MacNN too, people might get upset." Guess they were wrong. If you didn't care about it, why did you click on it?

  1. Kohlerslave

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Union's fault

    Yeah, this is all the union's fault. They're the ones that gave tax breaks to corporations to take their production overseas. It's the union's fault that the investment bankers were really not investing money. It's the union's fault that bank's were using predatory lending to people with little to no means of paying back loans. It's the unions fault that the US auto makers are 3-5 years behind designing vehicles the public wants. It's the union's fault that people are starting flagrant lawsuits against doctors and other health care providers, running their malpractice insurance through the roof.

    Get a life people. The unions are not the be all, end all cause of this crappy economy. Many businesses prospered greatly on the backs of union workers. Why should they suffer while the CEO's still make millions in bonuses while the company goes downhill?

    A strike authorization vote is just that. A vote to authorize a strike. It gives their bargaining committee permission to use that as a card on the table. Like it says in the article, if most of you bothered to even read it, that this is expected and normal during negotiations. It is NOT a vote to strike immediately.

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