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Verizon Axes Jobs as Landlines Become More Scarce
By Lindsay Welnick
February 24, 2012 - News
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As technology continues to make landline phones obsolete, Verizon must reconsider the jobs of 336 New Jersey employees.

Due to the decrease in demand for landline phones, Verizon says it has to lay off 336 New Jersey employees who maintain traditional copper wire networks, said a report by NJ.com.

"A little more than 10 years ago, Verizon served between 6.7 to 6.8 million phone lines in New Jersey," said Verizon spokesman Lee Gierczynski told the site. "Today, the company serves 2.5 million phone lines ... this is how the telecommunications industry has evolved in the last 10 years."

Within the next 21 to 60 days, workers based in Boonton, Plainfield, Freehold, Ewing, and Egg Harbor will be cut from the payroll, leaving only 20 employees in the Verizon Connected Solutions Unit, Gierczynski said.

The rest of Verizon's New Jersey employees need not fear, Verizon says. The remainder of the New Jersey work force, just under 15,000 people, work either on copper phone lines or Verizon's fiber optic FiOS network.

There is some disagreement, however, on whether or not the workers are being laid off as part of an ongoing labor dispute. 

IBEW Local 827, which represents 5,800 New Jersey workers at Verizon, says that the layoffs are connected with the fact that the two sides still don't have a new contract, something they've been going back and forth on for several months. The carrier says that's not the issue.

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