A sea of red shirted CWA members, many from CWA Locals 2001 and 2276, braved late afternoon temperatures nearing 100 degrees for a Solidarity Rally in front of Frontier Communication’s headquarters in Charleston, West Virginia on July 28.
Labor negotiations with Frontier began the previous Monday due to Local 2001’s contract expiring on July 31. Frontier’s contract with Local 2276, out of Bluefield, WV, will expire on August 20. Both locals are composed of Frontier Legacy employees. (See “West Virginia Locals Unite for Contract Negotiations” for more information.)
“Solidarity rallies like this are vital because they send a message to Frontier during negotiations,” said Elaine Harris, CWA International Representative and West Virginia Bargaining Committee Chair for 2001 and 2276. “These negotiations are going to set the stage for all future contracts with Frontier so we must stand together as one, strong union to reach our goals."
Rally speakers included CWA District 2-13 Vice-President Ed Mooney, CWA Vice-President of Telecommunication & Technology Ralph Maly and West Virginia Frontier workers, organizations such as the West Virginia AFL-CIO and West Virginia Council of Churches.
After a series of inspiring speeches CWA members gathered to deliver a petition to Frontier management with more than 1,150 signatures from Frontier employees.
“We have to keep in mind the old saying, it’s easy to break one stick but a bundle of sticks together is unbreakable – if we stand together we will be unbreakable,” said Choate.