AT&T, CWA hammer out tentative wireline labor agreements

Contracts cover Midwest and AT&T Corp
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AT&T (NYSE: T) reached "tentative" agreements with the Communications Workers of America (CWA) union on Friday covering wireline workers in both the AT&T Midwest region and AT&T Corp (CWA Communications and Technologies unit).

The Midwest contract covers over 13,000 workers in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin; the AT&T Corp contract covers about 5,700 employees located throughout the country, the service provider said in a statement. 

Each of the contracts will be presented to CWA members for ratification over the next few days. The union members have been working under the terms of the previous contract they agreed upon in 2009, but that expired April 7.

Under the proposed three-year agreement, AT&T said it would offer workers "wage increases in each year and a modest pension increase."

This agreement with the CWA comes on the heels of AT&T announcing last week that it agreed to a one-year labor contract extension with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) union covering about 7,000 workers.

Labor negotiations between unions and U.S. telcos like AT&T and its fellow RBOC Verizon (NYSE: VZ) continue to be a thorny issue. With traditional landline phone service revenues continuing to decline, service providers are trying to cut costs in their wireline divisions, asking union workers for concessions on health care, sick time and retirement benefits.

For more:
- see the release
- Reuters has this article

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