AT&T employees’ fight for a contract
By Charissa Patton
At&t Adertising and publishing employees picketed on October 4, 2010 at 6707 Brentwood Stair Rd. while Union leaders met with At&t executives to re-negotiate Labor contracts coving seven states within the At&t region.
Employees who are picketing are represented by the Communincation Workers of America(CWA) and are showing there support in the negotiations for a new contract by marching. However because they are not yet striking the employees can only picket and carry signs from 7:30 to 8 a.m.
“I came today to support the CWA. Our last contract expired in December 2009, we have since turned down two offers made by At&t and are currently working without a contract.” Scott Smith, an account executive, said.
The contract covers all At&t Advertising and Publishing employees and would give them a better base salary. It would also mean the bad debt policy would no long impact sales results. However some emplyees are not represented by the Union and are not aware of what is happening.
“I actually have no idea what is going on here, I’ve only been working with At&t since May so I am not eligible for Union membership yet.” Jonathan Wilson, an advertising consultant said. “Although anyone can join, the Union representative contacts members to organize these events and since I am not a member I was not on the contact list.”
The employees and Union are working together to come up with solutions so that they do not have to go on strike. They are hoping that At&t sees how important these issues are and addresses them with great care and understanding. The employees want to be respected and not taken advantage of and feel that working for a year without a contract is unacceptable.
At&t executives have offered two different contracts that did not meet the satification of the union members but the employees are deligiantly working together and keep coming up with more ideas. The Union members are hoping the they can get a contract signed within the fourth quater of this year.
“I hope that At&t gets the message that the contract they have offered is unfair and unacceptable and we hope that they are meeting with the union leaders in good faith and they can come to an acceptable new contract,” Scott Smith said.
“I to also hope that they get everything worked out because this contract will effect me to, however I probably would not joined this morning because it wasn’t very well organized and very few people showed up. Right now I need to be working and making money.” Jonathan Wilson said. “Although I do plan on getting an application and filing it as soon as I’m eligible to join.”