The CWA News | It’s Our Turn: 2015 Bargaining for Jobs and Fairness

Volume 75, Issue #2 | Summer 2015

It's Our Turn

CWA bargaining teams are negotiating 180 contracts covering more than 200,000 CWA members across our sectors. We want secure, sustainable jobs, real improvements in our standard of living, and above all, an end to the “race to the bottom” that too many employers are pursuing.

TELECOM

Telecom workers are bargaining at Verizon East; Verizon Wireless; AT&T Southeast and Global Services; Windstream; CenturyLink; Frontier Communications; Comcast; SuperMedia/Dex Media; YP Information Services, and others.

MANUFACTORING

IUE-CWA members at General Electric; Bemis Manufacturing; Eaton Aerospace; Delphi Packard; Johnson Controls and others.

PUBLIC WORKERS

CWA public workers are bargaining with state and local governments in New Jersey, New York, Iowa, California, Florida and other jurisdictions.

MEDIA

NewsGuild members are bargaining at the Washington Post; Thomson Reuters; Agence France Presse; Philadelphia Daily News Group/Philadelphia Inquirer; Ottawa Citizen; St. Louis Post-Dispatch and at other newspapers and media outlets in the U.S. and Canada.

AIRLINES

AFA-CWA Flight Attendants are bargaining at United/Continental/Continental Micronesia; Endeavor; Envoy; Mesa; Omni; Miami; Silver; Spirit and preparing to start at Frontier and Hawaiian. CWA customer service workers are bargaining at American Airlines.

BROADCAST

NABET-CWA members are bargaining with NBC Universal; Fox Digital; National Public Radio and television stations in New York, Connecticut, California, Ohio, Washington, D.C. and other states.

What We're Up Against

Corporate Greed

Wall Street is booming.  Corporate profits and share prices are up. The average CEO makes almost 400 times as much as a front line worker. From 2009-2012, 95 percent of income gains went to the 1 percent. For the vast majority of workers, real wages have declined or remained stagnant since 1979. That's true for workers with a college education and even an advanced degree, as well as for those who don't have one.

Working families and our communities deserve to share in the productivity gains that our work has produced. Instead, income inequality is at the greatest point since the Gilded Age of the late 1800s.

Collective Bargaining Coverage Lower Than Ever

Today, just 6.6 percent of U.S. private sector workers and 35 percent of public workers have collective bargaining coverage. Those rights continue to be attacked, by employers who intimidate, harass and even fire workers who want union representation, and elected officials looking to strip away decades of rights from public workers. For union members, it's as though all the non-union members in our industry are sitting across the bargaining table from us, as employers keep trying to push down our wages and benefits.

This makes bargaining harder than ever.

Bad Trade Deals Give Special Treatment to Corporations

Bad trade deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership open the door to more customer service, manufacturing and IT jobs going overseas. Left behind are working families and communities hit hard by the loss of jobs and tax revenue that funds our schools and vital public services.

Corporations already are lining up to move work to Vietnam, where wages average less than $1 an hour. This puts even more downward pressure on U.S. wages. How can U.S. workers compete with workers earning less than $1 an hour? And why should we have to?

We need fair trade that gives workers enforceable rights, and give labor, environmental other concerns at least the same standing as corporate protections.