Union Workers At AT&T Strike In San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Tens of thousands of members of the Communications Workers of America at AT&T, including about 400 in San Francisco, walked off their jobs Friday, union officials said.

Starting at noon, workers are striking for three days, said Orange Richardson IV, president of the CWA’s San Francisco office.

Richardson said he expects about 100 to 200 workers will walk a picket line outside 1 Powell St., AT&T’s flagship retail store in the city, Friday and all day Saturday and Sunday.

About 40 workers are expected to protest outside the company’s main administrative office on Bush Street Friday, but not over the weekend, he said.

Richardson said the two main issues are commissions for the workers in the company’s cell phone stores nationwide and health benefits for all AT&T employees.

“The union wants to empower cell phone store workers to negotiate commissions because at present they are controlled by the company,” Richardson said.

Health care benefits are also at issue, the union president said.

“Management wants all AT&T employees to pay 32 percent of their health costs as opposed to 26 to 27 percent now,” Richardson said.

The protest will end at 12:01 a.m. Monday, Richardson said.

A spokesman for AT&T said the strike was “baffling.”

“A strike is in no one’s best interest, and it’s baffling as to why union leadership would call one when we’re offering terms in which our employees in these contracts – some of whom average from $115,000 to $148,000 in total compensation – will be better off financially,” spokesman Steven Maviglio said in an email.

“We’re prepared, and we will continue working hard to serve our customers,” Maviglio said.

“Like any family, we have our disagreements, but we’ll sort them out,” Maviglio said. “We’ve reached 29 fair agreements since 2015 covering over 128,000 of our employees, and we’re confident we can do the same here.”

© Copyright 2017 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Comments

One Comment

  1. fuzzman656 says:

    When did this become a “thing?” If you plan on going back to work in three days, it isn’t a strike. It’s a temper tantrum. I’m for organized labor. This doesn’t help your case. It’s a waste of time.

    Face it – You don’t really want to strike, because you are afraid you will be replaced. If that’s your fear, you are truly powerless. Your feeble gesture is pointless. See you back at work on Monday, bright and early.

  2. fuzzman656 says:

    …and nobody except a huge cheapo uses “total compensation” as a bargaining term. It’s a weak attempt at making your compensation sound better than it is.

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