Jan 042017

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We’ve heard that AT&T may be asking for volunteers or gathering a show of interest concerning loans to California and Nevada.

CWA District 9 has been working without a contract since April and AT&T’s use of employees from outside of District 9 has the potential to negatively impact CWA’s bargaining position.
Any member(s) considering volunteering should be informed of this situation, and encouraged not to volunteer. The same “ask” has been made by us in the past when we have been in bargaining sessions.
Spread the word not to volunteer, as we want every District to be as successful as possible at the bargaining table(s) leading up to our expiration in 2018.
In Unity,
Ryan R Letts – President
CWA Local 4034
Dec 092016


AT&T workers in CWA District 9 (California & Nevada) have been working months without a contract while trying to get AT&T to bargain fairly. So far, progress has been painfully slow and it has been hard to get AT&T to respond to the Union’s demands (sound familiar?). CWA District 9 asks that you take a look at their request (edited for clarity and emphasis):

Good Day All and Happy Holidays!

AT&T West Labor Relations has approached the Union Bargaining Team about bringing on Out of State Loaners to start working in California and Nevada Jan 3, 2017 through March 31, 2017. We have told the company NO.
We don’t want loaners out here while we are working without a contract. The District 9 Locals are opposed to having loaners come out; and it would cause us problems while we are trying to bargain a fair contract.
We wanted to let you know ahead of time because we think the Company is going to force the issue. We’ll let you know if this happens. We are asking all members in all Districts to support our decision and discourage your fellow members from coming out here if asked.
The Loaners will be requested from the Midwest and the Southwest. we are not sure if any other areas will be canvassed.

Thank you and we will keep you informed.

In Unity,
CWA District 9

Sep 172016

read-your-contractIt is the contractual right of our members at AT&T to apply to voluntarily separate from the Company and, if meeting certain conditions, receive a sum of money in addition to any any accrued vacation or retirement benefit. This program, called the VSIPP (Voluntary Supplemental Income Protection Program), can provide a sum to a bargained-for employee, based on their seniority, of up to $33,000. This benefit is typically used by employees who are already planning to leave the business, for example coincident with retirement or other voluntary separation. All that is necessary to get on the “show of interest” list for this program is to fill out the form, linked below. As well, when this benefit coincides with a potential surplus situation, as determined by AT&T, then the list of all the people who have shown an interest in the VSIPP will be pulled and in certain circumstances all of those members asked if they would like to invoke this benefit (strictly voluntarily) in order to leave payroll and offer their position to a sister or brother who may end up surplussed within their FAA’s (Force Adjustment Areas) or Market Business Units (MBU’s). Continue reading »

Aug 162016

A big thank you to all who participated in our Stuff the Bus Campaign.  We ended up with lots of school supplies for those in need.

Thanks also to the Lead Stewards who went above and beyond to help get the donations and drop off the supplies.  Also, a special shout out to our Retirees Club who donated two carloads of supplies along with others who brought more to their meeting.  Then, they even helped us load the bus!IMG_20160816_152743

Thank you all again!

Mar 152016

nomorevol2The Company has informed us of their intention to canvass employees for more loans to California.

As you may know, CWA District 9 (California and Nevada) is currently in negotiations with their contract expiration at midnight, April 9, 2016. We have been asked by District 9 to not have volunteers working in California past the expiration date. We know our members understand that no one wants workers from outside the District doing work while bargaining is taking place; we support all those who bargain with AT&T.

If the Company proceeds with a canvass, we ask that our members do not volunteer to work in District 9 beyond their contract’s expiration. In the event the Company attempts to force, we ask that our members notify their manager that they are requesting a Union steward before continuing the discussion.

Feb 192016
peopleTO:  CWA District 4 Local Presidents – AT&T:
As some of you are aware from the T&T Conference, I asked President Shelton for the ability to try to negotiate in the Midwest over the DBS and the twenty cents per hour for Prem Techs, as we believe was negotiated in District 3.  Since this issue was still at his level, the President asked me to clear it with the other Telecom VPs.
The Telecom VPs had a call Tuesday. Among other issues, we discussed the twenty cents.  The other VPs are in agreement with it.  Based on that, we have sent a demand to bargain in the Midwest.  We fully expect the Company will initially not agree to bargain over just that narrow issue in the PremTech scope.  As you know from previous updates, the Company has already offered the twenty cents if we drop the fiber drop issue we have in some locations, and our right to grieve the scope in the future.  We expect the only way the Company will agree to negotiate is over the whole scope, since they believe they already have the right to assign DBS work to PremTechs.
The second issue somewhat ties into this.  It appears we are getting close to a national agreement on the unit size for the whole card-check process.  As you know, at least in the Midwest, we are still pushing to get that work in core Appendix F, and also trying to get the work done with current PremTechs — not contractors — at least where we have PremTechs.
I know you are getting hammered, as evidenced by the many emails that are sent to the website.  I wish there was a way I could make it easy for you and others to explain the situation and all the moving parts.  Unfortunately, there isn’t.  All we can do is continue to educate our members.  We know it’s difficult for them to understand that even if DBS is put into the scope, as it is in other districts, it does not automatically bring the work currently done by DTV contractors in-house.  The result of negotiations would simply be, as we believe it is in District 3, the placement of a dish should be worth an increase in base pay.  Our primary goal now is to attempt to get the twenty cents, but we will not sacrifice our right to grieve other unrelated issues in the scope.  The other major goal is to get as much of that work as possible into our core contracts performed by our members, and not into a different contract or performed by non-bargained for people.
I will update you again with any further developments.
Linda L. Hinton
Vice President
CWA District 4
Feb 152016
25210_w268The Midwest CWA Health & Safety team made things a little safer for our AT&T members who drive small trucks. The trucks, primarily driven by our members who install Uverse and DirecTV such as Premises Technicians, are quite small and fuel efficient. Though AT&T had carefully designed a vehicle load (known as a DVL) intended to ensure that the truck carried everything needed but was not overloaded, their tests had been conducted utilizing only one human in the truck – the driver. During real-world deployment of the trucks in the field, however, CWA noticed that in many cases these trucks would roll with two humans — usually the passenger was a trainee or trainer, but sometimes would be a manager conducting field training or evaluations. As a result, the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) would likely be exceeded because of the passenger’s weight. These vehicle weight limits are extremely important as they ensure that the vehicle is able to stop safely in the shortest distance possible. In the Midwest, as in other parts of the country, this is particularly important in the winter because an overweight vehicle on slick, icy road surfaces definitely presents a hazard.
Thanks to some advocacy by the CWA Midwest Safety Coordinators, led by Ron Gay, and the work of local stewards in CWA Local 4034,  especially Rick Balsitis and Bob Mourer, we were able to present to AT&T hard data about the hazards of carrying passengers in the affected vehicles. As a result and very much to their credit, AT&T issued an immediate injunction against carrying passengers in these vehicles until adjustments can be made to the DVL, or their policy, to account for this issue. The truck models are: Ford Transit Connect, Ford F-150, and the Chevy C-1500.
Oct 082015
Call to action!

This will take all of us!!

In our efforts to assist CWA District 4 and CWA International in their work to secure our members’ employment with AT&T, CWA Local 4034 is seeking information from our most valuable source – the membership. We know that all employees, of both AT&T and DirecTV contractors such as Goodman, are plagued with uncertainty due to the lack of clear communication from both employers. We are seeking to remedy that at the bargaining table and one of the most valuable tools when bargaining is information. If you are an AT&T employee or a DirecTV employee, you may have information that can help all of us secure good jobs for us and our families. We are asking you to share that information with us so that we can pass the information on to CWA leadership. We believe this will help us secure our employment during these chaotic times.

It doesn't have to be this way!

It doesn’t have to be this way!

We are asking that you email anything you think would be useful information to have when bargaining this work. Rather than use a web-based form to collect this information, we are asking that you send any information to a special email address we have built: This will enable you to send your information as well as any material you think we need to know about things that will impact the lives and families of the employees of both companies. And, though any employee who communicates with a union about their employer is protected from retaliation by the employer under federal law, we will keep your information confidential unless you tell us otherwise.

Some examples might include:

  • Contractors doing your work, in or out of your area
  • Information on AT&T procedures for installing/servicing DirecTV
  • Information on DirecTV procedures for installing/servicing DirecTV or any AT&T products
  • Information related to safety procedures (or being directed to do work that is not safe)
  • Customer service issues for either DirecTV or AT&T customers related to the merger
  • Any other items or information you think would help CWA bargain this work for the affected employees
Sep 152015

LyingFingersCross_I_swearYou might be aware, especially in Uverse, that the company has devised a digital business card and app for Premises Technicians. The app is capable of forwarding the card, including the technician’s photo, to a customer prior to arriving on the job. The company has begun training on the digital businesscard and its use.

We went to the company to ask for more details and express our concern over the possible negative effects that this could have on our members, such as identity theft. We were informed that it was strictly voluntary, but this still did not address our concerns.

We have heard that there are some managers trying to portray this as being mandatory, but it is completely VOLUNTARY. So, let your steward know if you are having any issues with managers saying that it is mandatory and if the ones that were misled are having any issues with stopping their participation in the program. We will take immediate action

Sep 112015

att-dtvAs you know, there are two different tracks with the AT&T purchase of DTV.  One is the current employees who work for or are contracted by DTV.  The second is our current AT&T bargained-for members who may preform work previously done by DTV.  Both issues are being coordinated on a National level, since it affects employees in many different titles across the Country, in and out of the current AT&T footprint.

Current DTV employees, at this point, are not Union members.  Therefore, the first step is to get them in the Union before we can negotiate a contract for them, or negotiate to bring them into current contracts.  As I am sure you know, those employees are not automatic Union members or covered by any contract.  It is the desire of the Company, as you can imagine, to continue to perform the majority of that work by contractors and lower paid, non-bargained-for employees. CWA’s position, as has been adhered to with previous AT&T acquisitions, is to follow the long-standing neutrality/card check agreement in the contract, which does include some critical time lines.

As far as the current bargained-for member, CWA is attempting to negotiate over that work.  As I am sure you understand, it is the desire of AT&T, just as it was for the PremTech title originally, to have all that work done by non-Union employees and contractors at the lower average wages and benefit levels as performed today by DTV employees.  CWA’s position continues to be to bring all that work in-house to protect current bargaining for employees in order to negotiate now and in the future for higher compensation — not lower, as the Company would like it to be. As you know, some of the same work, both outside and in centers, is being assigned to current members. We continue to try and get the Company to agree to bargain nationally over that work at many different venues around the Country.

In Solidarity,

Linda L. Hinton

Vice President

CWA District 4

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