Members of CWA Local 1298 leaflet spectators at the NCAA Women's
Basketball tournament in Bridgeport, Conn.
In San Antonio, Tex., members of Local 6143 tell AT&T we're
fighting to hold on to the American dream.
Members of Local 9003, techs from the Juanita Street garage in Los
Angeles, do some "practice" picketing.
In Pontiac, Mich., Kristen Harkonen, steward, and Monica Shadowens,
chief steward, for Local 4123, lead protest against AT&T's demands for
health care cuts.
Mobilization is in high gear for the final week of bargaining for new
contracts at AT&T East, Midwest, West and Legacy; contracts expire April
7. CWA locals and members are holding rallies and planning lots of
actions to support bargaining teams this week and next.
Members of Local 1298 leafleted outside the NCAA women's basketball
tournament in Bridgeport, Conn., and CWAers throughout District 4
protested AT&T's demands for health care cuts. In District 9 and
throughout CWA, activists mobilized around an unfair attack on prem
techs in Bakersfield, Calif., who were hit with a fine and attendance
occurrence by local management for doing what CWAers do every Thursday:
When local management told the techs they couldn't wear the shirts,
they stood tough. You can support them, and all CWAers mobilizing for
new contracts with AT&T, by
sending a message to local management that we stand together.
Rallies and meetings are planned in every district as our contracts
expire, so check out with your local union for the latest, and
click here for bargaining updates for every contract.
CWA Local 1103's Joe Mayhew leads a "train the trainer" session for
99 Percent Spring.
Occupy Wall Street-inspired activists are gearing up to lead
demonstrations and resistance as part of "99 Percent Spring/Challenging
The movement — led by a coalition of
60 progressive groups that includes CWA — has already trained 86
national trainers, who then fanned out across the country last weekend
to train their regional counterparts in 21 cities. All this preparation
will culminate in a week of workshops, from April 9 to 15, where 100,000
activists will learn the causes of America's economic distress, history
of nonviolent direct action and how to channel what they've learned into
campaigns for change.
"It's connecting the dots and understanding how we got here," said
Chris Kennedy, CWA's Human Rights Director, who hosted a training
session in Atlanta. "Only after understanding how we got here will we
believe in the ability to change things."
Last weekend, nine CWA members helped prep regional leaders who
ranged from students to retirees, autoworkers to Greenpeace activists.
Some had demonstrated with Occupy in Zuccotti Park in New York, while
others were new to fight for economic equality. The diverse group
encompassed all religions, races and sexual orientations.
"Everyone got up and said one thing that was unbelievable: 'Sure,
we're from different places. Sure, we all look different. But we are
here so everyone can have a fair shot,'" said Joe Mayhew of CWA Local
1103, who helped lead the New York City training session. "We were there
as the 99 percent."
Democracy only works with an informed and active citizenry, the
trainers believe. So the April workshops will start off with a primer of
what happened to America's economy. Participants will learn about the
choices that created this climate of inequality, starting with the
policies of President Ronald Reagan, who attacked unions, deregulated
financial markets and cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans.
After discussing who's responsible and what a different future could
look like, participants will develop their own personal economic justice
narrative, solidifying why they are involved and part of the 99 percent.
Finally, participants will learn the strategies for nonviolent direct
action, such as how to escalate and de-escalate a situation. In
particular, they'll be studying Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus
Boycott, which was not actually the result of a spontaneous act of civil
disobedience, but rather a meticulously planned event.
AFA-CWA's Darren Shimora, who attended a training session in
Washington, said these workshops will help create a lasting framework
for everyday Americans to build strength and solidarity, with the goal
of being able to respond quickly.
"If we receive word of some injustice...we would be able to quickly
mobilize behind it, instead of saying, 'we need two weeks to plans
this,'" he said, noting that 100 AFA-CWA Flight Attendants will be
joining the 99 Percent Spring/Challenging Corporate Power effort. "This
is the groundwork we need to go forward."
How can you participate in 99 Percent Spring/Challenging Corporate
Click here to sign up to attend a training session, or offer to host
a workshop in your union hall, place of worship, community center or
CWA activists are planning actions around Verizon's annual
shareholder meeting to bring attention to corporate greed and economic
The May 3 meeting starts at 10:30 a.m. at the Von Braun Center, an
arena located in downtown Huntsville, Ala. Shareholders will be electing
directors and voting on six proposals concerning corporate governance,
including one that would require full disclosure of Verizon's direct,
indirect and grassroots lobbying.
The protest is part of the 99 Percent Spring/Challenging Corporate
Power's plan to demonstrate at annual shareholder meetings across the
country — or "Shareholder Spring." Activists will be confronting the
corporate executives responsible for wrecking the economy, damaging the
environment and amplifying the gap between the rich and the poor. Along
with Verizon, they'll be targeting Chevron, Bank of America, Walmart and
"On May 3, Verizon will hear from activists across the country: it's
time Verizon started paying its fair share of taxes, creating and
keeping good jobs in the U.S. and treating workers fairly," said CWA
Chief of Staff Ron Collins.
More information will be available at
A giant corporate pig helps members of CWA 1109 demonstrate against
the 1 percent and corporate greed.
In Irvine, Tex., CWAers from Local 6215 rally against verigreedy
More than a thousand CWA members in New York City rally outside
Verizon's corporate headquarters. For a video of this rally, click the
March 22 was a great day of rallies and leafleting across the
country, with CWA members joined by members of many different unions,
Jobs with Justice, Occupiers and other supporters. Check out
this terrific slide show.
And mark your calendar for May 3, Verizon's annual meeting. They'll
be lots of actions and events that day. Stay tuned to
www.unityatverizon.com for updates.
The ad appeared in the March 28 edition of the New York Times, and
got a lot of media attention in Germany.
CWA activists and T-Mobile USA workers are spotlighting the company's
bad decision to close seven call centers, affecting the jobs of 3,300
From Pennsylvania to Texas to Oregon, workers are meeting with
community leaders, local elected officials and others to fight for their
The seven centers slated to close are: Allentown, Pa.; Fort
Lauderdale, Fla.; Frisco, Texas; Brownsville, Texas; Thornton, Colo.;
Redmond, Ore.; and Lenexa, Kansas.
CWA has been working with T-Mobile USA workers who want a union
voice. The German union ver.di, which represents T-Mobile and Deutsche
Telekom workers in Germany, has played a major role in this effort,
standing up for the rights of workers to choose union representation
without the atmosphere of fear and intimidation that T-Mobile USA has
This week, a full-page ad in the New York Times featured a
call by 11 prominent German political leaders and scholars who told
Deutsche Telekom and T-Mobile that U.S. employees "should not be
influenced, pressured or intimidated by employers if they exercise their
basic right for freedom of association."
Tomorrow, T-Mobile activists and supporters will rally outside the
Allentown, Pa., call center to protest the company's decision to close
the facility. More than 400 Allentown workers will lose their jobs in
"There's no other job here that pays even remotely that well for the
trade we're involved in," said Jim Brilhart, a technical support
specialist in Allentown. "It's difficult for a lot of us locally."
Brilhart added, "This is a serious blow to the local economy."
Across the Atlantic, ver.di members will hold a picket line on
Friday, bringing attention to the ongoing violations of workers' rights
at T-Mobile USA as well as their own negotiations with Deutsche Telekom
Starting next week, be on the lookout for ads on Facebook, Google and
other prominent websites, spreading awareness about T-Mobile's actions
and an online petition. The message: T-Mobile should bring back work it
has offshored to Asia and Central America, and keep our call centers
CWAers also will be working with call center workers in Frisco and
Brownsville, Texas, two more locations that T-Mobile management has put
on the chopping block.
Blake Poindexter, a technical support specialist in Frisco, said he's
unsure about his future job prospects. But he continues to work with CWA
to gather support from U.S. representatives in Texas to co-sponsor an
anti-offshoring bill that penalizes American companies that ship jobs
"I want to save anyone else from having to go through this," he said.
"I wouldn't want to put anyone through what I'm having to go through,
T-Mobile promised employees that it would hire back many of 1,400
dismissed workers and help others transition into new jobs. But, a week
later, many employees aren't too hopeful.
Poindexter said he and his colleagues were simply instructed to go to
the company's website to start applying for one of the 1,400 open
positions "as if we were random people on the street looking for a job.
I don't know how much is true, how much they're going to help me," he
Jon Brookshire, a fellow Frisco-based technical support specialist,
looked at the openings and discovered that to keep his current position
and not take a drastic pay cut, he would have to move to either
Albuquerque or Colorado Springs. "Both those economies over there are a
lot worse than Dallas, so that's kind of a gamble," he said.
CWA Local 1039 won an election last Friday to represent 20 workers at
a New Jersey childcare center.
Workers at the Trenton-based Capital Child Care voted 14 to 4 for
CWA. Employees are now striving to curb management's bad behaviors, such
as fudging time sheets to avoid paying overtime, and will advocate for
improvements to their workplace and level of care.
"In spite of an aggressive anti-union campaign by a boss who
committed numerous unfair labor practices, workers stuck together and
remained public in support for CWA throughout the campaign," reported
District 1 Organizing Coordinator Anne Luck-Deak.
Workers first approached the Local — located right across the street
from the center — in December and started holding informational and
committee meetings. Demanding recognition, they presented their boss a
mission statement signed by all the workers. When he refused, CWA filed
a petition with the National Labor Relations Board.
Local 1039 President Lionel Leach, along with staffers Michelle
Franklin and Carol Thomas, aided the campaign. The victory has already
encouraged the local to explore organizing other childcare centers in
US Airways Express Flight Attendants ratified a five-year agreement
on Tuesday that provides new pay rates above the industry average and
The 300 workers at PSA Airlines, a wholly-owned subsidiary that flies
under the brand US Airways Express, are based in Knoxville, Tenn.;
Dayton, Ohio; and Charlotte, N.C. They are represented by AFA-CWA
"Through job security protections and potential growth, we have great
hope for the opportunities before us," said L.C. Acor, AFA-CWA PSA
President. "PSA Flight Attendants took ownership of our future by
standing together throughout the negotiations and generated the power to
achieve these improvements."
About 40 Verizon members from several CWA locals fill the hearing
room at the state capitol in Annapolis.
More than 40 CWA and RMC members from seven CWA locals filled the
hearing room of the Maryland Senate Finance Committee with a sea of red
shirts this week. Their mission: to spotlight a bill that would allow
Verizon to sell its landline assets without any review by the Public
CWAers waited for more than four hours for the bill, SB 813, to be
discussed, and took advantage of that time to tell others at the capitol
just was Verizon was trying to do and the serious effect it would have
on consumers, workers and communities.
While Verizon tried to present the measure as "streamlining the
process," supportive legislators and witnesses, including Paula
Vinciguerra, Local 2106, made clear that Verizon simply wanted to sell
the landlines without any oversight by state regulators.
Members from Locals 2100, 2101, 2106, 2107, 2108, 2300, 2336, and
retirees from RMC 2108 joined the action at the state capitol.