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Republicans in Congress want to work with the Obama administration to fast-track the passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).1 

The TPP is the largest—and worst—trade deal you've never heard of, having been devised in secret by representatives of some of the world's largest corporations.2

It's so big and has the potential to do so much damage, it's been likened to "NAFTA on steroids."3 Watch this short video to see what I mean: 


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Will you help spread the word about fast track and the TPP by watching and sharing the video right now?

P.S. Once you've watched the video, please join the growing chorus of Americans who are saying no to fast track and the TPP by adding your name to this petition from Larry Cohen, president of the Communication Workers of America.

Sources:

1. "Republicans Defend Obama's Trade Pact While Pressing To Deregulate Banks," The Huffington Post, January 27, 2015 
http://www.moveon.org/r?r=302740&id=107774-22717831-iK8eQ4x&t=6 

2. "Obama's Covert Trade Deal," The New York Times, June 2, 2013 
http://www.moveon.org/r?r=302736&id=107774-22717831-iK8eQ4x&t=8 

3. "NAFTA on Steroids," The Nation, July 16, 2012 
http://www.moveon.org/r?r=302738&id=107774-22717831-iK8eQ4x&t=10 

STOP FAST TRACK  ....  STOP the TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP
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The Trans-Pacific Partnership is another trade deal that will outsource even more American jobs, and it’s being called “NAFTA on steroids” because of the devastating effects it will have.
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Right now in Congress there is fast tack legislation being pushed that will allow this bad trade deal to sail through congress. The CWA along with several unions and other allied groups are fighting this legislation and are targeting several members of Congress that we need to oppose fast track and the TPP.
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In WNY we are targeting Congressman Chris Collins, and this week is CWA’s week to get calls into his office. Attached is a flyer with information to call Congressman Collins;  it is a very easy call to make, it only takes 30 seconds, and everything you need to say is on the flyer.
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Please make your call today, and be sure to have friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers call too.  This effects everyone just like NAFTA did, and everyone knows someone who lost their job to NAFTA, so lets stop TPP from having the same devastating effects on our communities and nation.
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Call Congressman Collins: Urge Him to
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Oppose Outsourcing!
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Say NO to Fast-Track for TPP
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Congress is set to vote on a massive outsourcing trade bill in the next 75 days. This deal, called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will directly impact our ability to negotiate fair contracts this year. All jobs are tradable – including call center work – and this deal will move jobs to Vietnam & Malaysia.
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Congress MUST hear from us – not just from corporate CEOs.
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CALL HIM NOW!
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.Dial 1-855-980-2352 and use the script below (leave a voicemail, if necessary!)
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“I live in New York’s 27th Congressional District, and I strongly urge Congressman Collins to oppose Fast-Track for TPP. It’s a corporate trade deal that will outsource American jobs and further exploit workers overseas. I urge the Congressman to
vote NO on Fast-Track for TPP.”
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This article was written by Bruce Kushnick, Executive Director of New Networks Institute, and appeared in the Huffington Post on January 15, 2015

Did Verizon Commit Perjury in the Net Neutrality Proceeding About the Use of Title II?

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New Networks Institute has filed a Petition for Investigation with the FCC to examine Verizon's use of Title II and whether the company has committed perjury in the current Net Neutrality, Open Internet Proceeding, (Docket number 14-28).

Click Here to Send a Note to the FCC: Request the FCC Investigate Verizon's use of Title II and mention "Open Internet", use "Proceeding Number 14-28" and add "New Networks Institute's Petition".

Let Me Summarize Our Petition for Investigation.

Simply Put: Verizon has told the FCC, the courts and the public that applying Title II would harm investment if it is reinstated in the current Net Neutrality proceeding. In fact, Verizon has gotten their 'friends', corporate-paid think tanks, 'academics', astroturf groups, and even co-opted non-profits to parrot this statement as if it was true.

The Problem? Verizon's entire fiber optic deployment (including FiOS) and financial plan is based on using Title II and this has not changed since Net Neutrality became an issue about a decade ago.

This is an Open and Shut Case: Verizon Communications, Inc. and its affiliates, including Verizon Wireless, have violated Section 1.17 of the Communications Act of 1934, by "intentionally omit[ting] material information that is necessary to prevent any material factual statement that is made from being incorrect or misleading".

Simple to Prove: Compare these two statements by Verizon Communications, Inc., and the company's affiliates.

The first excerpt is from a 2014 Verizon NY cable franchise agreement, and is similar, if not identical to every other Verizon state-based fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) deployment.

2015-01-16-FiostitleII.png

The second excerpt is from Verizon's Open Internet Comments July 15, 2014

"Imposing a Title II common carriage regime on broadband providers would be a radical change in course that would only chill, not spur innovation. Title II is a regulatory dinosaur, crafted eighty years ago - and based on 19th-Century laws regulating railroads - to address the one-wire world of rotary telephones."

Title II is a Cash MachineVerizon's entire business plan is the based on using Title II as it allows the company to not only to use the utility rights-of-way, but as we discuss in the Petition, it also allows the company to get local phone customers to fund these investments of the fiber optic networks. In New York State, Verizon received at least three rate increases for "massive deployment of fiber optics" (and "losses", which we will be addressing in future petitions).

NOTE: The phrase "massive deployment of fiber optics" is taken directly from Verizon New York's filings and the NY Public Service Commission's orders. We did not need to 'make it up'.

If you have been reading the past articles, you know that we have been documenting all of this for years. Our research reports, based on Verizon's own financial reporting and other Verizon-authored documents have uncovered that Verizon's entire investment in the fiber optic networks, including the wires to the cell towers for Verizon Wireless or the "special access" wires, are based on the use of Title II.

Verizon Told the FCC Over and Over that Title II Harms Investment

There are pages of quotes by Verizon it their own Open Internet Proceeding filingsabout the harms to investment if Title II were imposed. Here are just a few.

Reclassification would create a major drag on new and improved broadband infrastructure, even though substantial investment in such infrastructure is precisely what is needed to keep pace with exponentially increasing consumer demands for bandwidth.

By chilling such investment and discouraging innovation, Title II and related proposals would only impede, not advance, the public's access to and enjoyment of the Internet.

The prospect of 19th-Century price regulation and Title II's other arcane requirements would stifle investment in and development of the Internet.

This is Misrepresentation on a Massive Level, Not Some Trivial Point.

This massively deceptive practice of getting Title II benefits on the state level while impaling it on the federal level has nothing to do with either the multiple classifications of services over the wire or some miss-matching 'investor tale' with that of the companies' reports to the FCC.

We are well aware of the use of multiple classifications, i.e., that the Title VI cable service, combined with a Title I Internet information service, can use a Title II network, but it is the flows of money that is at the crux of the issue here.

The "Title II" Issue is about the Flows of Money and the Use of Title II as a Cash Machine.

Verizon uses Title II to fund the infrastructure as "Title II", which means it is part of the state-based utilities as a telecommunications network and therefore fuels the financial perks including charging utility customers for the 'massive deployment of fiber optics'. Verizon also gets the rights-of-way from the state-based utility as Title II.

There are those who will argue that the networks can have multiple classifications of service over the same wire. While true, the issue of investment is about the flows of money. In at least New York State, Verizon's Title VI cable networks were built as part of the existing telecommunications network and therefore the cable division paid little or no construction costs for the FTTP networks it uses to deliver its cable programming. Similarly, it appears that the fiber optic wires to the cell towers and the wires used for Internet service, were all installed as Title II facilities -- i.e., the affiliate companies are getting a free ride on the backs of local phone customers who were charged multiple rate increases in New York for "massive deployment of fiber optics".

I note that these 'pundits' for Verizon or the ill-informed have not bothered to actually go through the financials of Verizon's state-based utilities or read the actual primary Verizon and NY State commission documents we quote, much less what we uncovered.

The "Janus" of Telecom

Janus was the two-faced Roman mythology figure. While the name in the 21st Century can have multiple implications, the simplest is when a person is "two-faced" or duplicitous.

The facts reveal, then, a massive duplicity on the part of Verizon Communications that continues to violate Section § 1.17 of the Communications Act, which requires "Truthful and accurate statements to the Commission".

(1) In any written or oral statement of fact, intentionally provide material factual information that is incorrect or intentionally omit material information that is necessary to prevent any material factual statement that is made from being incorrect or misleading...


The omission in every document of any statement that Title II is used for investments and that the fiber-to-the-premises networks are already Title II, which is then used to charge local phone customers as 'defacto investors', requires immediate investigation. It is at the very heart of the current Net Neutrality/Open Internet proceeding, and other proceedings related to network infrastructure policy and practices.

  • Verizon has deceived the FCC, the courts and the public over and over, and it is time for the FCC not only to acknowledge this fact but to start investigations into the failure of Verizon to disclose critical, material facts.
  • The FCC needs to examine the extent of the use of Title II today by Verizon for deployment of infrastructure used for broadband, Internet, phone and cable service.
  • The FCC needs to examine the role of customers as 'de-facto' investors; how Verizon has used Title II to get rate increases on basic POTS (plain old telephone service) customers and tax perks.
  • The FCC must examine the role of Title II and the other classifications ('titles') in allowing the manipulation of the flows of money between and among Verizon New York, the state-based utility, and Verizon Communications and Verizon's other affiliate companies, including Verizon Online, Verizon Business, Verizon Services and most of all Verizon Wireless
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And this must be done with a focus on Verizon's own statements, information, comments, reply comments, etc, made to the FCC, as well as to the courts and the public. The FCC must examine whether Verizon intentionally provided factual information that is incorrect, or intentionally omitted material information, in an effort to mislead the Commission concerning Verizon's claim that Title II harms investments.

Did Verizon Commit Perjury?

Section 47 CFR 1.16 states:

Unsworn declarations under penalty of perjury in lieu of affidavits.

Any document to be filed with the Federal Communications Commission and which is required by any law, rule or other regulation of the United States to be supported, evidenced, established or proved by a written sworn declaration, verification, certificate, statement, oath or affidavit by the person making the same, may be supported, evidenced, established or proved by the unsworn declaration, certification, verification, or statement in writing of such person...

We ask the FCC to start an immediate investigation into the fact that Verizon has not once disclosed, as far as we can ascertain, any of the documents and information about their use of Title II, which we have uncovered and detail in the Petition. 

Where are the Investigations and Oversight?

Finally, I find it incredible that the leading government agency that is in charge of all of America's communications in the United States had no clue that Verizon gamed the system. But this points to a more serious question -- Where are the other government agencies, advocate offices, politicians, state commissions, or Internet advocate groups who claim that they care about 'reclassification' to Title II? Where are the investigating reporters in the US? Why wasn't this deception exposed years ago? 

NOTE: This Petition was created by New Networks Institute's independent team of lawyers, auditors, and communications experts and we received no funding from any group, organization, company or political party.

We did it because it is the right thing to do.

CWA 1122 VNA Unit Newsletter February 11, 2015

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Everyone has the will to win, but not everyone has the will to prepare to win.

This quote, as a formula for success, is equally the reason for failure if ignored. Preparation is everything.  Our contract is a testament to decades of involvement by our Chief Stewards, in collaboration with the Union membership, to give us the very foundation on which we do battle with our challenges today. Our contract and Union initiatives have provided us with the tools to protect our workplace rights and our work/life balance. The Non-Visit Activity Process and the Staffing Committee Assignment Report are two examples of how the Union has procured a means for us to have a voice in our workdays. 

The non-Visit Activity Process allows us a place to record what we do for patients outside of direct patient care.  It gives us the opportunity to account for non-billable responsibilities during work hours-responsibilities that ensure quality of care, such as case conferencing, lab drop-offs, and equipment pick-ups, and mandatory tasks such as managing e-mail, e-mail in-services, and talent management modules.

 …Yes, an extra step, but this is what it will do for you:  when the tool is used consistently, it allows management to see what you do on a day-to-day basis without needing to question your time management skills, your judgment, or your commitment to your workday.

A little known tool that can also help us achieve a better work/life balance is The Staffing Committee Assignment Report (found on page 80 of the Contract).  Our Chief Stewards bargained to have this process in place when an employee feels she has been given an unreasonable workload. The employee is responsible to conference with her manager regarding this workload.  If the employee is still made to feel that he/she has to complete the assignment, either on overtime, or on her own time (which is never condoned), the employee needs to utilize the Staffing Committee Assignment Report.  Remember, our Union has worked hard to ensure that there is NO mandatory overtime, and NO employee should encroach on their personal time to complete work assignments. Our contract ensures this.

These tools have been put in place because the Union recognizes that management has pressured employees in the past.  This pressure should not cause employees to use clouded judgment in regards to their safety and personal responsibility.  You are already being held accountable for your actions, your documentation, and your time management.  Safeguard your job and use these tools to help you.

Things are evolving at the VNA. We want you to know, management is responding to months and months, literally years and years, of Union campaigning for improved relations between management and employees.  Most recently, there have been changes in management staffing.

Remember, preparation is the key.  Please consider how your involvement in the Union can prepare us to make future changes.

In closing, we are excited to host the first ever “Winterfest” on Thursday - February 19, 2015 from 5:00pm -9:00pm for all VNA CWA brothers and sisters.  Plan on stopping in for food, beverages and entertainment at the Harvey D Morin VFW Post 2940 965 Center Rd. West Seneca, NY 14224. Please feel free to bring a dessert to pass.  We hope to see you there!

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In Solidarity,

VNA Unit Mobilization Committee

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Download newsletter V21 2.11.2015


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CWA Local 1122     ...      2015 Meeting Dates

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MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS 2015

  • Tuesday, February 3
  • Tuesday, April 7
  • Tuesday, June 2  ***
  • Tuesday, October 6
  • Tuesday, December 1

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*** Our June 2, 2015 Membership meeting will be a picnic style meeting at a place to be detemined.

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Membership Meetings are held at Lucarellis 1830 Abbott Rd. in Lackawanna, N.Y.

Dinner is served at 5:00pm, the meetings will begin at 6:00pm

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STEWARD MEETINGS 2015

  • Thursday, January 8
  • Tuesday, March 3
  • Tuesday, May 5
  • Tuesday, September 1
  • Thursday, November 5

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Steward Meetings are held at our Local Union Hall 3775 Genesee St.  

Food is served at 5:00pm, the meetings will begin at 6:00pm

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If you have any interest in the change or resolution of workplace issues, then it is your responsibilty to attend these meetings.

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Download Meeting Schedule

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TO:                       All  Verizon  NY, NE and NJ  Locals

FROM:                 Chris Shelton, Vice President

DATE:                   November 24, 2014

SUBJECT:            Verizon’s Double Standard

As we gear up for Contract Mobilization, Verizon has been saying some nasty stuff about us when they try and convince our Verizon Wireless brothers and sisters not to join our union. 

Verizon management has been having dozens of forced, mandatory meetings with Verizon Wireless workers to try and keep them out of our union. Amongst the things they are saying about us is

1) We are a business that just wants dues money;

2) We are corrupt;

3) We just want to strike;

4) We don’t care about our customers;

5) We fine members anytime we want;  

6.) We are an outside third party that is a business rather than a union.

As they attack us with one face, they tell us to our face that they want to get along and work together. 

We have developed this attached flyer that we are asking every shop steward to present to management at every chance they get, and ask them to check off which kind of relationship they want with our union as we face them at the bargaining table once again. 

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Hey Verizon, Can You

Say “Two-Faced?”

     

In meetings, Verizon claims they want to work with our Union and have a respectful relationship. But when VZW employees try to organize into CWA, the very same company accuses us of corruption, violence, only wanting dues money, and being an outside “third party” 

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Verizon can’t have it both ways.  

Every member should ask their managers to choose what kind of relationship they want. Ask them to check only ONE of the following statements. 

Verizon Management: Please Check only ONE answer.

 1) As a company, Verizon would like a respectful relationship with our employees. We pledge not to accuse your union of being violent, corrupt, or a “third party” when non-union employees want to join your union.

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  2) As a company, Verizon has no respect for your union, we do not want to work with your union, and we will continue to accuse your union of being corrupt, and of being violent. 

For more information, please visit www.facebook.com/vzworkersrising

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 5, 2014

Contact: Mandela Jones, 646.200.5316mandela@berlinrosen.com

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Cablevision and CEO James Dolan

Found Guilty of Multiple Violations of

Federal Labor Law

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Illegal Acts Include Retaliatory Firing of 22 Workers for Union Activity, Personal Threats and Intimidation from CEO James Dolan

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Federal Guilty Verdict Clears Path to NYC Enforcing Labor Rights Provisions of Cablevision Franchise Agreement

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New York, NY – A Federal Administrative Law Judge ruled late Thursday that Cablevision and its CEO James Dolan had broken multiple labor laws in an attempt to stop workers in Brooklyn and the Bronx from unionizing.  The union that represents the workers, the Communications Workers of America, vowed to press the City to begin a process to bring the company into compliance with its cable franchise, and if necessary declare it in default of the franchise, for violations of the labor rights provisions of the agreement.  The franchise requires the company to comply with Federal labor law.

The ruling stemmed from charges that two separate NLRB regional offices authorized against the company in April 2013: in Brooklyn for illegally firing 22 workers, bargaining in bad faith, and spying on workers, and in the Bronx for illegally intimidating, harassing and essentially bribing workers during a union representation election.

“Finally the NLRB has spoken in an unprecedented 300 page decision that outlines the deliberate law breaking of James Dolan.  In any other jurisdiction he would face arrest,” said Larry Cohen, President of the Communications Workers of America.  “Yet based on his past behavior Mr. Dolan likely believes his personal fortune and family control of Cablevision will allow him and Cablevision to avoid any real penalties.  Since the trial Jim Dolan and Cablevision have escalated their attacks on their employees and their union.  The NLRB needs to take immediate action.  The City and State of New York need to treat Cablevision and all Dolan family controlled entities like the major law breaker that is documented extensively in this decision.”

The long-awaited decision is a major boost to the Brooklyn Cablevision workers' campaign for a fair and just contract.  The decision comes after a trial concluded in December of 2013.  In mid-November, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a third sweeping federal complaint against Cablevision, including personally citing CEO James Dolan, for violations of federal labor law at its Brooklyn unit. Cablevision was charged with illegally firing Jerome Thompson (a pro-union worker), conducting an illegal sham poll of workers following CEO James Dolan’s in-person visit designed to intimidate employees with a highly prejudicial speech, and illegally implementing changes in working conditions without bargaining with CWA.  A trial on these charges is expected to begin shortly and the CWA is confident that Cablevision will be found guilty of these charges as well. 

Cablevision fired Jerome Thompson for the comments he made about “slavery” in a private meeting conducted by the company to explain its new Optimum “branding” plans.  In contrast, an anti-union worker who used foul and degrading language that included racial slurs against pro-union co-workers on Facebook was only given a slap on the wrist – Cablevision directed her to post an apology on her by then private Facebook page. At the same time, she was given expanded responsibilities.

Cablevision has run an illegal, anti-union campaign since its 300 Brooklyn technicians – the overwhelming majority of whom are Black and people of color – voted to become the first union workers at the company nearly three years ago. The company has refused to offer the workers a just contract, choosing to spend far more on executive compensation and union-busting attorneys than it would take to settle a fair contract. Cablevision even unlawfully granted raises of $2 – $9 an hour – as much as $18,000 a year – to nearly 17,000 employees outside of Brooklyn to thwart unionization. 

Recently, 42 of the New York City Council’s 51 members wrote to the Commissioner of New York City’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunication to express concerns that Cablevision may not meet city franchisee requirements and earlier this week, the City Council held a hearing on the topic.

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For more information, visit www.thecablevision99.org.

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Summary of Findings

Brooklyn

The ALJ found that Cablevision unlawfully fired 22 employees in January of 2013 in violation of Sections 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act.  The ALJ ordered a backpay remedy for all 22 employees.

The ALJ found that a supervisor unlawfully directed employees not to engage in union activities in January 2012.  The supervisor’s illegal direction violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

The ALJ found that a company Vice President illegally threatened a bargaining unit employee telling him that unionization was futile in violation of Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

The ALJ further found that Cablevision’s cancelling of training on smart meters without notice to the Union or giving the Union the opportunity to bargain over the meter training violated Sections 8(a)(1) and (5) of the Act.

Additionally the ALJ found that a notice sent to employees blaming the Union for the cancellation of the meter training violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

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Bronx

The ALJ found that James Dolan, Cablevision CEO, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act multiple times during his three speeches to the Bronx workers in order to thwart their efforts to unionize.

Specifically, the ALJ found that Dolan’s announcement of a wage increase for all employees in the footprint, was made for the purpose of halting unionization in the Bronx and elsewhere and illegally violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

Further, the ALJ found that Dolan’s promise to improve benefits similarly violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

The ALJ found that Dolan unlawfully solicited grievances from the Bronx workers and promised to fix these problems for the illegal purpose of thwarting the Bronx unionization effort in violation of Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

The ALJ also found that Dolan’s statements about Brooklyn being left behind were illegal threat made by Dolan for the purpose of stopping the Bronx organizing effort in violation of Section 8(a)(1) of the Act.

CWA Local 1400 on STRIKE against Fairpoint Communications

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At 12:01 this morning, October 17th, CWA Local 1400 and IBEW are on strike against Fairpoint.   The Company declared an impasse on August 27th and imposed the terms and conditions of those company proposals. The Company's proposals sought to freeze pensions, cut retiree health care, raise health care costs, end job security, contract out and outsource our work to out of state and foreign countries. They wanted new hires to be paid the minimum wage. The Company has not moved off of their proposals and it was a take it or leave situation from the beginning of negotiations. At yesterdays meeting with the company, they once again refused to compromise and both unions had no choice but to call the strike.

This strike is caused by the unfair labor practices of FairPoint during negotiations for successor agreements to the now-expired collective bargaining agreements between FairPoint and the Unions.  FairPoint has engaged in objectionable and unlawful conduct, including but not limited to the following:

·       by failing or refusing to provide the Unions with requested information;

·       by unilaterally changing conditions of employment by allowing management to perform bargaining unit work;

·       by interfering with members’ ability to engage in protected, concerted activity by enforcing previously unenforced work rules;

·       by unilaterally changing conditions of employment by revoking funding for the Working Family Committee; and, most importantly,

·       by unilaterally implementing new terms and conditions of employment at a time when the parties were not at an impasse in negotiations.

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The following is the press release that was sent out this morning at 4 AM:

FairPoint Workers in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont On Strike
Unions Say Company Refuses to Compromise to Preserve Reliable Service and Good Jobs

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Augusta, ME—At 12:01 a.m. on Friday, October 17th, nearly 2,000 employees of FairPoint Communications (FRP) in northern New England went on strike.  Early Friday morning they established picket lines at hundreds of work sites across Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont.
 
“The company’s actions have brought us to this place,” said Peter McLaughlin, Business Manager of IBEW Local 2327 in Maine. “We did not want to take this step. Our members want to work; they want to take care of their customers. However, our bargaining team worked as hard as we could to reach a fair agreement that would preserve good jobs and help the company prosper. We’ve offered significant concessions to this company that would save them hundreds of millions of dollars. But they absolutely refuse to compromise on any significant issue.”
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Negotiations began on April 25th, when the company came to the table with proposals that would cost workers more than $700 million. The company sought to freeze pensions, raise health care costs, cut retiree health care, and institute a two-tier wage system that would pay new hires as little as minimum wage. In addition, the company sought to end job security and outsource union members’ work to out-of-state and foreign contractors.
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After dozens of bargaining sessions during which the company rejected every significant union proposal, the company declared an impasse on August 27th and imposed the terms and conditions of their proposals on the workers. The unions have charged the company with violating federal labor law and are seeking injunctive relief from the National Labor Relations Board.
 
Employees say the North Carolina-based company, which emerged from bankruptcy in 2010, wants to slash labor costs in order to either sell the business or satisfy shareholders with dividends. “This company is largely owned by a small number of Wall Street hedge funds like Angelo, Gordon & Co.,” said Don Trementozzi, President of CWA Local 1400. “Their priority is to squeeze as much money as possible out of the workers who’ve kept this company going, not to provide the 21st-century telecommunications system that northern New Englanders need and deserve.”
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Union leaders say the company hired a notorious “union avoidance” law firm, Seyfarth Shaw, to lead the negotiations with the goal of forcing draconian terms on the workers. “It is clear that this company never intended to reach a negotiated agreement with our members,” said Glenn Brackett, Business Manager of IBEW Local 2320 in New Hampshire. “They put their outrageous proposals on the table on April 25th and never budged. That is not good faith. That is not compromise and cooperation. It is disrespect, pure and simple. Our members refuse to work under these conditions any longer.”
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Members of IBEW and CWA as well as supporters from other unions and community organizations will picket at work sites in order to bring public awareness to their situation and to deter replacement workers from crossing their picket lines. They will ask customers and service providers not to cross the line to do business or make deliveries to FairPoint locations.
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“This fight is about keeping good middle-class jobs in our region and making sure that customers get the service they deserve from well-trained, experienced workers, not low-wage temps from out-of-state or overseas,” said Mike Spillane, Business Manager of IBEW Local 2326 in Vermont. “Our members have been organizing and educating the public for well over a year. While they would much rather continue to work and take care of our customers, they are absolutely united and ready to strike for as long as it takes to win a fair agreement.”
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The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) System Council T9 includes local unions in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont and represents nearly 1,700 employees at FairPoint Communications. The Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1400 represents nearly 300 FairPoint employees in the three states. For more information, visit www.fairnessatfairpoint.com.




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CWA District One responds to Verizon's latest surplus offer .....
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The Company has made an offer to further negotiate over the "Special" EIPP. They have also sent an e-mail to all of our members attempting to negotiate with the membership to try and divide us. The Union has agreed to re-open negotiations but the Company's action make these negotiations harder not easier. We will of course keep you apprised of the situation as it unfolds. We have set a deadline of November 7th.
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Verizon proposed surplus offer  .....
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To:                  All New York and New England Verizon

                        Local Presidents

From:             Dennis G. Trainor, Assistant to the Vice President

Date:             October 17, 2014

Re:                 Update on Verizon’s Special Offer

Two weeks ago, the Company approached CWA with a special incentive offer for certain members to leave the payroll.  This offer was identical to the offer that CWA rejected last year with a few exceptions.

Last year, the proposal was to make an offer to 4 titles in certain Force Adjustment Areas.  This year the proposal is to make an offer to 25 titles in certain Force Adjustment areas.   In this year’s proposal the Company offered an alternative arrangement to using Force adjustment areas. They offered to exclude any Local in a Force Adjustment Area that did not want to accept the offer.

When we first received the proposal from the Company we informed them that we are not interested in dividing our Union by making offers on a local-by-local basis. We would not allow the Company to attempt to “divide and conquer” our membership.

Last year, when the Company made a very similar proposal, we had intense negotiations to discuss their desire to get people off the payroll and our desire to address the future work for our members.  We asked the Company to commit to FiOS build-outs over the next several years, to build new wire centers and to reduce the number of Board and Lodging Assignments.

This year, when the Company made their proposal, the Union raised the same concerns about the future work for our members.  The Company made it very clear that they are not .interested in entertaining any proposal regarding FiOS build-outs.

Over the last two weeks we have been discussing this proposal with our locals, District 2/13 and IBEW.  Last Friday, the Company put out an email to all employees stating that they made a proposal to the Union and they spelled out some of the details. This caused a lot of confusion and many members thought it was an actual offer.  Verizon must think that by communicating an offer directly to our members that this will make us cave-in to a one-sided offer that does nothing to protect the future work needs of our members. 

Today we told the Company that if they want us to consider their proposal-they have to address our needs.  We told them that we stand ready to discuss a real proposal that allows them to offer an incentive where needed, while growing the Company and jobs for our members.  We hope the Company heard us and will be willing to come to the table with a serious proposal. 


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coorespondence recieved from CWA District One Downstate Director Gladys Finnigan 10-10.2014
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Dennis Trainor, Assistant to the Vice President of District One asked me to send out the following message to all Verizon locals in NY/NE:
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As you know we have received a proposal from Verizon regarding a surplus offer. One of the provisions of the Company's proposal is to offer an option to make this offer on a local by local basis.
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The National Union has told the Company that we are not interested in dividing our Union in this way. We are in discussions with all of our locals regarding the remaining provisions of the proposal and what our response will be.
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Earlier today we found out that the Company is planning to send an e mail to employees this afternoon regarding this situation.  As usual, when dealing with Verizon their communication will cause confusion in the ranks and is being sent to all employees, even ones not included in the Company's proposal. 
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Please be assured that we will provide any updates regarding this matter as they develop.

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