Verizon workers represented by the Communications Workers of America (CWA) in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions and at Verizon Connected Solutions voted to ratify a four year extension of their current contracts, which were set to expire in August 2019.
The extensions provide for additional wage increases and enhanced retirement benefits. The agreement, which extends the contracts through August 5, 2023, will deliver an 11.2% wage increase over the additional four years and covers over 34,000 Verizon workers, including call center workers, and central office and field technicians.
"This agreement builds on the success of the 2016 strike, and it will ensure a better future and good, family-supporting jobs for thousands of Verizon workers," said CWA District 1 Vice President Dennis Trainor. "This agreement reflects the more constructive relationship between CWA and Verizon that has developed since the strike. "
Separate agreements were ratified covering 40 Verizon Wireless retail workers in Brooklyn and 7 workers in Hazleton, Pa., who voted last month to join CWA. The Brooklyn agreement provides for a $900 signing bonus for Brooklyn Wireless employees, creates a first-ever floor for the merit pay pool, creates a new Labor-Management committee to address further improvements in scheduling, and strengthens the grievance procedure. Additionally, about 90 Verizon Wireless technicians will receive the 11.2% compounded wage increases over the term of the extension and will have improved language regarding transfers by seniority.
"We saw the early negotiations with Verizon as an opportunity to make improvements for our members while avoiding the lengthy conflict we experienced two years ago. This is a solid contract for Verizon workers that will improve wages and raise the living standards of our members across the region." said Ed Mooney, Vice President for CWA District 2-13, which covers Pennsylvania to Virginia.
By mutual agreement, negotiations on the contract extension were limited to wages and benefits and the length of the new agreement. The wins for Verizon workers come amid a wave of worker actions to raise wages, improve working conditions, and hold corporations accountable. Like the successful teacher strikes this spring, Verizon's willingness to come to the table early and agree to this contract is yet another testament to the power of working people standing together.