Verizon: union win

Andrew English aenglish at
Tue Aug 22 14:37:20 PDT 2000

I worked with many rank and file CWA activists when I was involved with Jobs With Justice. Compared to many other national unions, CWA did a pretty good job of fighting concessions during the 80s, and maintaining some kind of pattern bargaining in the face of deregulation and the ATT break-up. They also have a fairly democratic internal culture and a far more extensive system of rank and file mobilization on the national, regional, and local levels. Until recently, they may not have done as much on change-to-organize as some other unions, but they seem to be catching up there.

The growth of non-union telco firms is clearly their biggest challenge.

As for politics, their position is within the AFLCIO mainstream. I think the big New Jersey CWA public sector local is affiliated with the Labor Party, but not very many of their telco locals.

They didn't support Sweeney in the 1995 AFLCIO overturn. Donohue put one of their women leaders on his ticket, which might explain their alignment with the old guard back then.

-Andy English

-----Original Message----- From: Doug Henwood <dhenwood at> To: lbo-talk at <lbo-talk at> Date: Tuesday, August 22, 2000 3:09 PM Subject: Re: Verizon: union win

>Nathan Newman wrote:
>>There is no doubt that a lot of the energy of Seattle/DC/Philly/LA will
>>spill back into those day-to-day struggles, but part of the pragmatism of
>>UPS, Boeing, the LA Janitors, and Verizon struggles also have to spill
>>over into the globalization mass action movements if they are to become a
>>real mass struggle for change.
>They could, if both sides repress the urge to piss on each other.

More information about the lbo-talk mailing list