Verizon workers will end strike
Union workers picket outside a Verizon Wireless store on August 17 in San Francisco.
August 20th, 2011
02:13 PM ET

Verizon workers will end strike

Thousands of striking Verizon employees will return to work on Monday, as the company and the unions have made progress in negotiating a number of local and regional issues, Verizon said Saturday.

The employees will return to work without new collective bargaining agreements. The company said both sides have agreed on a process for moving negotiations on the big issues forward.

The 45,000 union members have been picketing since August 6 to protest concessions that Verizon is trying to get from its employees. Those concessions include the elimination of two paid holidays, the freezing of pensions, the alignment of pay raises with job performance, and the union's contribution of $100 per employee towards health care premiums.

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Filed under: Business • Telecom • U.S.
soundoff (119 Responses)
  1. verizon worker

    I love reading these posts from the people against unions.

    Let me ask YOU a question... you take a job, let's say 15 years ago, being promised a set of wages and benefits that are very good. You work hard, are very productive, and treat your customers like family. Meanwhile, your employer hires some other people willing to work for less & will benefits about half as good as yours.

    A few years later, your boss then says, look, I don't care how long you've been here or how hard you've worked to help us make almost $20 billion dollars in the last 4 years, you're going to take an almost 20% pay cut, I'm going to change your benefits all because those other people are willing to work for less. Oh and some of you are going to lose jobs bc $20 billion isn't enough, and I'm shipping the work overseas where English is a second language.

    Would you be so happy? Would you say, hey, I understand, its the American way?

    Say what you want about unions, buy THEY fight to keep jobs here. You people need to wake up. You're here on CNN, read what's going on in Europe & the Middle East. It boils down to unemployment! If America doesn't start to bring its work home and put people to work, the same thing will happen here!

    The ONLY reason our unemployment rate is so high is because our government ALLOWS businesses to ship work out of the country. What are you going to do when its YOUR job being sent to Asia or Mexico?

    August 20, 2011 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Simon

      Wow you must live in another world than the rest of America. I guess getting laid off would have been better? How do you feel about the other Verizon employees that do the SAME job as you for far less? What is up with your arrogance?

      August 20, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • What?

      I think you need to wake up my friend. Unions are the very reason companies can't afford to keep the jobs here, because of the unrealistic demands that they have. Unions had a use, but no more, only to the people who collect the dues. Wake up dude, you are being bent over, and don't even know it.

      August 21, 2011 at 1:42 am | Report abuse |
    • What?

      Keep drinking that union koolaid dude!!! They are laughing at your ass while you are out working, while they don't do a damn thing except sit back, and rob you of more money out of your paycheck, that's it!

      August 21, 2011 at 1:46 am | Report abuse |
    • termlimits

      Normally I would be against Verizon because they have lousy customer service, IMO. But in this case the people on strike are the very ones who actually gave the lousy customer service. So p iss on the strikers!! Go VERIZON!!

      August 21, 2011 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
    • evans48

      I support you and all fellow union members. Verizon can afford to continue employee's benefits; it's the fat cats at the top who want all the $$$ for themselves. these negative comments are from people who don't know the true facts. Same as the long strike in 1989. we walked the picket line for nearly 4 months just to keep the benefits we had.

      August 21, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      Seriously? That $20B in profit sure didn't come from the landline side of the business, which is the group striking for a new contract. That profit is from Verizon Wireless, the side of the business where the customer base is growing and customer service actually works. You're blindly believing the union propoganda if you think your side of their business is actually profitable. Why else would they have sold off so much territory? Verizon sells nothing off that actually succeeds....yellow pages, Frontier, etc. They are all pretty much failures, pointing to exactly why they dumped them.

      I did my 10+ years at Verizon on both union and management sides. The deal is that your jobs are going away and CWA is doing all it can to continue its union dues payments. It's not about you at all. They want those dues or else there's no need for them to exist. If you believe they are protecting your job and your future, look around. The population base of employees has been eroding for years and only VZ Wireless profits have kept your side of the business afloat. DSL is a dinosaur service that hasn't been, and won't be, upgraded to anything of substance in years. FiOS expansion is about nil. People are disconnecting landlines faster than they are connecting them so your customer base is evaporating.

      This is about the cost of doing business. Your side of the business is not profitable enough to sustain the ridiculous level of benefits you receive for FREE. Nowhere else I can think of offers benefits to employees for no cost while it continues to lose its business. It's time to wake up and join the rest of the country in paying your fair share of costs to help your company be able to provide those jobs. Verizon is a horrible company to work for, I'll give you that, but at least you have a good job with wonderful benefits. Most of America would feel blessed to have it as good as you do. Even if you lose some of your free benefits, you'll still be better off than most of America.

      Wake up dude. One day they won't need you anymore and you'll still be singing the union solidarity songs. Time to be thanksful for what you have, hope it lasts longer than it may and plan for the event that one day you may need to find work like so many other Americans reading your post with a bit of animosity.

      August 24, 2011 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
  2. CSnord

    It looks like the workers finally woke up to the fact that striking in a failing economy is a bad tactical move. If other people are willing to do your job for less than you are paid, then you need to lower your wage expectations or improve your skill set to get a better paying job. Publicly traded corporations like Verizon have a Federally mandated fiduciary responsibility to increase shareholder equity by limiting costs and maximizing income. They are literally bound by law to try and pay as little as possible for labor. Why people cannot understand that is beyond me.

    August 20, 2011 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
  3. ConcernedNetizen

    @CSnord: Judging by the backup in repair workflow, i'd say it's also that the company realized a few dozen managers running around doing the whole east coast sea-board's worth of work doesn't last long. Bad economy aside... It takes years to learn to be safe working on telephone poles. You could have 20% unemployment and still not have the craft experience nessessary to fill the ranks with scabs.

    August 20, 2011 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Peter Live!

      Sorry, Concerened, you are simply wrong. At another large Telecom we are GRATEFUL when the unions go on strike, as it allows us as managers to correct myriads of errors; clear the workflow queue; and otherwise perform general cleaniup of the NW and systems.

      The management population is FAR more adept – even with a modidum of training – at working through repair/customer issues than the union workforce, with the exception of the very BEST performers in that class.

      Frankly, while I come from a Democrat/Union family, this two-tiered class of employee – underpaid managers and vastly overpaid labor (whose job functions overlap in many regions).....must go AWAY.

      August 21, 2011 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
    • SmittyBlack

      @live if you wait for the workers to go on strike to correct things then your companies management is poor. it should be hand in hand to keep records, plant and customers in working order.

      August 21, 2011 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Alfietcr

    Union bachers are always self employed or people who are not in unions cuz A) they dont have the guts to become unionized or B) their company hits them hard when they even think about becoming an union. It mostly sounds something like this "if i work minimum wage so should everyone else" or "if im a millionare and i did it by myself so should everyone else" Unions are made of people like you and me, they have families, they work for a living just like everyone else, xept the unemployed, people who life of the government or millionare executives who just bark and someone else does the work. Why want for them to have less instead of wanting to have wut they have? its beyond me. I guess its human nature, people who dont have jobs with benefits want them to lose their benefits instead of wanting their beenefits and working on achieving them. They root for the huge company instead of the workers who, let me be honest, will be stuck in that dead end cycle and will never be millionares. Everyone is a critic until they knnow wut an union is, so you are preaching to the choir here, just let them be and fight for wut u want, instead of fighting for others to lack what you lack. Envy is the path of the dark side.

    August 20, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. michaelfury

    August 20, 2011 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. banasy©

    @verizon worker:

    I am sure I will get bashed for this, but I'm firmly on your side.
    Most people have no idea how much management messes around with unions.
    I do.
    Good luck.

    August 20, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. banasy©

    Jeff Frank:

    He was on strike.
    Get real.

    August 20, 2011 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff Frank ( R - Ohio ) "Corporate Greed? - Hands Off S.S.?"

      Sorry..I'm a pit bull getting out of control.

      August 20, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  8. banasy©

    Jeff Frank:

    August 20, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff Frank ( R - Ohio ) "Corporate Greed? - Hands Off S.S.?"


      August 20, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Jeff Frank ( R - Ohio )

    ...leaving the blog to go help my wife outside. Later 🙂

    August 20, 2011 at 5:41 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Cesar

    Same story since the beginning of civilization. Mgt has been giving it to the working class. When we all pass on, in the year 3009, Mgt. Will still be giving it to the working class.

    August 20, 2011 at 11:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. What?

    Get back to work you whiners.

    August 21, 2011 at 1:43 am | Report abuse |
  12. termlimits

    Normally I would be against Verizon because they have lousy customer service, IMO. But in this case the people on strike are the very ones who actually gave the lousy customer service. So p iss on the strikers!! Go get 'em VERIZON!!

    August 21, 2011 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
  13. jeff

    there is fiber running from the wireline central offices to the cell towers, this connects the cell phone users to the internet, so without wireline you would have no internet, tv, or wireless data

    August 21, 2011 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  14. john

    telephone repair is similar to connecting a sorround sound.. same rules apply, dont touch the AC or you'll get shocked and dont let the wires cross. same thing... id like to see sorround sound installers leave an 85k+ job because they are asked to pay $100 a month. Silly strikers. It takes a regular person a few days to get it right, but it takes strikers 12 years to master ths simplicity.

    August 21, 2011 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • jeff

      john, you obviously have no clue about communications or the central office environment

      August 21, 2011 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  15. s kel

    oh shut the hell up bob in alabama, your screwed up state, belives in screwing over hard workers.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:29 pm | Report abuse |
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