Corbin AT&T workers join strike
A group of 20 linemen, repairmen and splicemen in Corbin are among more than 20,000 AT&T employees who have been on strike across nine states since Saturday.
The members of Communications Workers of America Local 3372 held signs on the shoulder of U.S. 25 near the AT&T work center off of Laurel Ridge Road.
A number of motorists honked their horns in support of the workers as they drove passed.
“We are extremely happy with it,” one of the strikes said of the support they were being shown.
The workers in Corbin are among 80 members of Local 3372 based in Lexington who are walking the picket lines over what union officials describe as unfair labor practices.
The workers have been without a contract but had remained on the job as negotiations continued.
Jeff McMillian, president of CWA Local 3372, said the strike was the result of the company not negotiating in good faith.
“They are not coming to the bargaining table, not wanting to negotiate, and not putting people at the table that have any authority,” McMillian said of AT&T.
“Then they are wanting to discipline members that are wearing CWA stuff during the bargaining,” he said.
Despite that, McMillian said the negotiations are ongoing, though there is no timetable for the work stoppage to end.
“We are telling our people to keep the faith. That we are trying to negotiate,” McMillian said. “At the same time, we don’t want our people to get an unfair contract. We want to do what is best for our people.”
“CWA Local 3372 cares about its members,” McMillian said.
McMillian said once the contract is approved, the workers could be back on the job the following day.
The striking workers include technicians, customer service representatives and others in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee.
“We’re surprised and disappointed that union leaders would call for a strike at this point in the negotiations, particularly when we’re offering terms that would help our employees,” AT&T said.
Company officials noted some of the striking employees earn $121,000 to $134,000 in total compensation.