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The Union Difference at AT&T Mobility

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By Joseph Shea – Sales Rep, AT&T Mobility, Newburgh, NY

NewburghI have worked in the wireless industry for many years at different companies. Now that I am a sales rep at AT&T Mobility and a member of the Communications Workers of America I realize what a big difference it makes. I am proud to be in a union and I want to explain why I think it is so important to be involved.

1) Protection. If you’ve ever been a target or seen a co-worker targeted by a manager this may sound familiar. Maybe their sales have dropped because of a life circumstance or there’s a personality conflict. I’ve seen someone written up for taking a customer’s call even though everyone, including the manager, was doing the same thing. When something like that happens, would you rather rely on HR, hoping they’ll see your side and not just cite “company policy”, or do you want an entire union of employees behind you and a union rep there to fight your case? 2) It’s the small stuff that counts. Personally I have never faced discipline. For employees like, me who have never had a problem with management, the union benefits us in many other ways. At AT&T we are contractually provided with a 15 minute break every 4 hours. My manager may request that I take a shorter lunch break during a rush; however I can easily turn him down. We have input in the way our work schedule is made. There is no favoritism, no drama. We are also guaranteed raises twice a year. 3) Be a part of something bigger. This is perhaps the most important thing. Soon we will go back to the negotiating table with AT&T. I know the power we have. We are the most profitable part of the company. We are the image of AT&T that people see. Our company needs us just as much as we need them. When it’s time to negotiate a new contract, we will fight to improve the job, to be better able to provide for our families, and to better enjoy our lives. We will fight for a larger base salary, lower reliance on commission, and to restrict the company from changing our commission structure without first negotiating. All I know is that when the time comes I will be there, supporting myself, my family and my fellow employees. I want to make sure that we get a contract that benefits us, and all the people that will come after us, and that’s a pretty amazing feeling. 4) We are stronger together Right now AT&T is the only unionized wireless company. When we bargain with the company they claim that they cannot raise wages too high because they have to compete with non-union companies. When you at Verizon Wireless form a union we will be much stronger in both AT&T and VZW. Together, as the two largest wireless companies, we will be able to raise standards throughout the industry.
CWAdminThe Union Difference at AT&T Mobility