Jun 9, 2016 - Warren and CWA Team Up Against Wall Street

June 9, 2016

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CWA Members Fight for Safe Staffing in New York

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Members of CWA Local 1168 in Western New York rallied this week in support of the Safe Staffing for Quality Care Act, a life-saving bill to require hospitals to limit the number of patients assigned to nurses. Nurses are calling for the bill to be sent to the New York General Assembly for a vote before the end of the legislative session on June 16.

The CWA members gathered to door-knock and leave lawn signs in support of the safe staffing legislation in the district of Assemblyman Robin Schimminger, who has voted the bill down and stalled it in every committee it has gone through.

"It's impossible," said CWA Local 1168 President Cori Gambini. "You see RNs breaking down, crying, they have to choose between which patients they're going to get to. People that are in our beds right now are acutely ill. They need people to be in there assessing them and watching them."

"I want to be able to care for my patients. I want to be able to give them the care they deserve," said CWA Local 1168 member and RN Sarah Buckley.

Learn more about the campaign here.


CWA members in Western NY call on Assemblyman Schimminger to support life-saving Safe Staffing legislation now.


Bargaining Update

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United Airlines

United Flight Attendants protested at the United Airlines annual shareholders meeting Wednesday morning at the Willis Tower in Chicago. The Flight Attendants, represented by AFA-CWA, called on United management to finish their merger with a contract they can ratify. You can watch video of the rally here.

"An airline is about people, and customer service starts with the people who deliver it and keep our passengers safe. United Flight Attendants will stand together to be recognized and call on United management to finish this merger with a contract we can ratify. Contract now," said AFA Presidents at United Airlines Kathleen Domondon (pre-merger Continental Micronesia), Ken Diaz (pre-merger United), and Randy Hatfield (pre-merger Continental).


Hundreds of AFA-CWA members hit the streets in Chicago to call on United to deliver a fair contract, including International President of AFA-CWA Sara Nelson, AFA-CWA United Airlines Council 8 President (ORD) Paul Antuna, and President of NABET-CWA Local 54041 Justino Villar.

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AT&T Mobility

CWA's AT&T Mobility bargaining team reached a tentative agreement with the company for a four-year National Bargained Benefit Plan. Details of the agreement and ratification voting information will be provided on union town hall calls.

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Momentive


Members of IUE-CWA Local 81359 at Momentive held an informational picket in Waterford, NY, as their contract is set to expire this month.

Members of IUE-CWA Local 81359 at Momentive Performance Materials held an informational picket in Waterford, NY, as their contract is set to expire this month. Negotiations with the corporation that unilaterally slashed worker pay a few years ago are expected to be challenging.

"The biggest thing that everyone wants is affordable health care," IUE-CWA Local 81359 President Dom Patrignani said. "All we want to do is have a fair contract."

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OFS

The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) published a letter of solidarity with nearly 300 OFS workers, members of CWA Locals 3263 (Norcross, Ga.) and 1400 (Sturbridge, Mass.), who are fighting for a fair contract. The OFS facility in Norcross is also used as a movie studio.

The contract has been extended to June 29, and the CWA bargaining team continues to push hard for a fair contract.

Read the statement here.


Organizing Update

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Employees at VICE Canada voted to join the Canadian Media Guild. The national bargaining unit covers more than 200 employees who work at VICE Canada's digital media organizations.

Read more here.

The Canadian Media Guild represents 6,000 journalists, hosts producers, technicians, videographers, editors, librarians, programmers, sales reps, administrative staff and freelancers.


Democracy Update

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At a news conference in front of the White House, CWA, Public Citizen, Common Cause and other democracy allies called on President Obama to issue an executive order requiring federal contractors to disclose their political spending and to push Congress to take action to repair and strengthen the Voting Rights Act.

"Wall Street's deregulated, anti-union, trickle-down, one percent economics are being propped up by out-of-control campaign donations to our elected officials," said CWA President Chris Shelton. "Americans deserve a democracy that works for all Americans – one in which everyone has an equal voice and elected officials are accountable to the people, not the wealthy."


Movement Building Update

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CWA and other union activists joined environmental allies at a protest outside Exxon's annual meeting in Dallas, Texas.

Herb Keener, a CWA Legislative-Political Action Team activist and member of CWA Local 6215, told the crowd that CWA was with them in the fight to address climate change and to hold CEOs and big corporations accountable. CWA and environmental groups have been working together for more than a decade, taking on unfair trade measures that enable trans-national corporations to pollute and cut workers' wages.


Herb Keener, a CWA Legislative-Political Action Team activist and member of CWA Local 6215, speaks at a protest outside the Exxon annual meeting.


CWA Members Mobilize Against 911 Dispatch and Nursing Staff Privatization in New Jersey

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CWA Local 1085 workers in Salem County, New Jersey, are fighting back against a dangerous proposal to privatize the County's 911 dispatching services and the nursing staff at the Salem County Correctional Facility. The proposal by the Salem County Freeholders threatens to outsource the jobs of 35 emergency call center dispatchers and 15 nurses in the county jail in a half-baked attempt to plug a hole in the County budget.

The county's privatization proposal would thrust dedicated, trained and experienced union workers into unemployment and replace them with workers with fewer qualifications and little experience.

CWAers have been building a robust grassroots campaign to save dispatching services and the nursing jobs. The last four Freeholder meetings have been packed with CWA members, county union workers, first responders and residents voicing their opposition to the outsourcing. At the last meeting, Freeholders unexpectedly tabled the budget that contained the cuts to the dispatchers and nurses that necessitated the privatization.

Members have also flooded the Freeholders phone lines with calls against the measure. Nearly 4,000 supporters have joined the "Supporting Salem County 911 Dispatchers" group in just one month.

CWA will continue to speak out against the continued threat to these jobs. The Freeholder Director is up for election this November, and CWA members promise not only to make their voices heard at the meetings but also at the ballot box.


CWA Local 1085 workers with supporters outside the June 1 Freeholder meeting in Salem County, New Jersey.


2016 CWA Legislative-Political Conference Kicks off Next Week in DC

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CWA activists will meet in Washington, D.C. for the union’s Legislative-Political Conference on June 14-15. The two-day conference, "Reclaiming Our Economy and Our Democracy," will focus on CWA's fight against an economy that's rigged against working families.

Following morning sessions and panels, activists will head to Capitol Hill to lobby members of Congress and their staff.

CWA President Chris Shelton will open the conference. Speakers will include: Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sherrod Brown; Representatives Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Mark Pocan (D-WI), John Lewis (D-GA), Keith Ellison (D-MN), and John Sarbanes (D-MD).

Learn more here.


Don’t Miss the Town Hall Call with Senators Elizabeth Warren and Tammy Baldwin

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Next Wednesday, June 15 at 8 pm EDT, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Tammy Baldwin will join allies from the Take on Wall Street campaign to share how we can take on big-money interests – and how CWAers can help be a part of this exciting effort.

We'll hear about action in the states and other work underway to take on the 1 percent.

Click here to register.


Bank Workers to Brief Congress on Outrageous Sales Goals at Big Banks

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Bank workers and former bank workers from the nation's biggest banks will testify in a Congressional briefing on Friday about the aggressive and unreasonable sales goals that are forcing bank workers to push unnecessary products on their customers. Congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) and other members of Congress are set to attend.

Aggressive and predatory sales metrics hurt customers as well as employees, and bank workers are determined to fight against them. Workers will demand increased oversight and regulatory reform while enhancing full transparency on the products being pushed by banks. 

The Committee for Better Banks is a coalition of bank workers, community and consumer advocacy groups, and labor organizations coming together to improve conditions in the bank industry. They work for just wages, career paths and job security for front-line bank workers. Learn more about the coalition here.


Philadelphia Newspaper Guild Finds Pay Disparity at Philadelphia Media Network

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New research from the Philadelphia Newspaper Guild has shown a significant gender and racial pay disparity at the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News, and Philly.com. At the three publications, all owned by the Philadelphia Media Network, 28 of the 30 top-paid reporters were men.

The studies follow the headline-making report in March from IAPE-CWA on pay disparities at the Wall Street Journal and other Dow Jones publications.

"This is a very serious issue for us, and should be for everyone in 2016," said Bernie Lunzer, president of The NewsGuild-CWA. "We are far beyond the era when pay disparities were considered acceptable."

The local has shared the data with the Philadelphia Media Network and is urging substantial change. The New York local is having similar conversations with New York Times management. Disparites were also recently uncovered at the Washington Post.


CWA/NETT Academy & APT College Join Forces to Benefit Members

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The new strategic partnership between CWA/NETT Academy and APT College provides CWA members everywhere high quality, affordable education and training, any time of day, 365 days a year. This collaboration offers students and their families the opportunity to select an education format that best suits their life situation and budget – online or on site.

Combining the strength of CWA/NETT's online education and the convenience of APT College's on-site, anytime, anywhere classroom training helps Union members reach their goals easily and effectively.

For more information visit www.cwanett.org or call 1-800-431-8488.


NABET-CWA Local 51011 members participate in fiber optics training.