CWA/Cingular Award Honors Local 6222

CWA Local 6222 President Claude Cummings and Cingular Director of Sales Keith Cressman have received the CWA/Cingular 2005 Partnership Award, honoring their cooperative efforts benefitting workers and the company.

Cummings and other Local 6222 leaders were instrumental in helping Cingular win a five-year, $8 million contract from the city of Houston to provide voice and data services to its employees. The contract includes deployment of more than 1,600 modem cards and Blackberry handheld devices. In addition, Cingular will continue to provide voice services for more than 3,800 wireless phones for the city.

The city was in the process of reviewing a bid from Sprint/Nextel when Cummings told City Councilman Adrian Garcia that Cingular is an SBC subsidiary and the only union wireless provider. Cummings and local Vice President Steve Flores followed up with visits to others on the council, imparting the same information. "Most of them didn't know that," Cummings said.

The local's "relationship with the city and the emphasis that they placed on the value of the SBC/Cingular relationship with Houston and the state of Texas helped with unanimous approval of the ordinance, awarding Cingular the bulk of the city's wireless business on the first vote," said Cressman, who closed the deal.

"The outcome of Claude's effort shows that where our locals are involved in electing and supporting public officials, they can ask those officials' support to benefit both our members and our employers, and in turn help grow our union," CWA President Larry Cohen said.

Noting that the Partnership Award is also the shape of a triangle, Cohen pointed out that, "this effort by Local 6222 is a perfect example of the CWA triangle - legislation, representation and organizing - at its best."