T-Mobile’s planned $26 billion acquisition of Sprint would result in the loss of more than 28,000 jobs, according to comments by the Communications Workers of America (CWA) to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
The FCC is on day 40 of its review of the acquisition. The deal faces a review from the Justice Department and the FCC that could last more than a year.
“As currently structured, the proposed T-Mobile and Sprint merger is against the public interest,” said Chris Shelton, CWA president. “The merger would result in massive job losses totaling more than 28,000, while offering no countervailing benefits for the public. Unless the companies make a binding commitment not to eliminate jobs in their proposed merger, to stop violating federal labor laws, and to fully respect workers’ rights, the FCC should not approve this merger.”
T-Mobile wouldn’t comment on the CWA’s claims; however, its website touting the “New T-Mobile” says the merger is a “job creator from day one,” with 3,625 new full-time jobs in the first year, compared to standalone operations; 12,400 new jobs created in small towns and rural America by 2021; and an annual increase of nearly 25,000 U.S. jobs overall.
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The CWA, however, said about 24,000 jobs would be eliminated as a result of overlapping retail store closures at both postpaid and prepaid Sprint and T-Mobile locations. About 4,500 additional jobs would be eliminated due to duplicate functions at corporate headquarters in Overland Park, Kansas, and Bellevue, Washington, it said.
The proposed merger also would combine two companies with “a long history of violation of employment law and workers’ rights,” the union said. T-Mobile has been found guilty of violating U.S. labor law six times since 2015 and has been subject to about 40 unfair labor practice charges since 2011. Also, both Sprint and T-Mobile offshore a “significant portion” of call center work to the Philippines, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Mexico, Panama, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Canada, it said.
The CWA also said the merger raises “serious competitive concerns,” and “serious national-security concerns regarding possible integration of Chinese government-owned Huawei and ZTE equipment in their networks.”
Sprint didn’t respond to a request for comment.