AT&T, Wireline Workers Agree on Contract Extension

Some major progress to report in labor talks between AT&T and some of its key landline workers the carrier has reached a deal with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers that will impact 7,000 employees in Illinois and northwestern Indiana, Dow Jones Newswires reported.

The agreement extends a contract for one year that was slated to expire on June 23. Workers will get a salary bump of 1 percent plus a bonus of $500 for employees making less than $50,000 per year and $300 for those making more than $50,000.

This, however, is just a drop in the bucket. AT&T is still negotiating with tens of thousands of workers who are represented by the Communications Workers of America and the IBEW, all around the country. Their contracts expire on June 23 and Aug. 4.

AT&T wants workers to accept increased health-care premiums and pension cuts, to which the unions are obviously opposed. The major carriers are taking in smaller revenues for their wireline businesses as more and more consumers dump landlines in favor of mobile phones.

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