AT&T reaches contract with Teamsters Local 959

AT&T reaches contract with Teamsters Local 959
Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 3:40 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The Teamsters Local 959 reached an agreement with AT&T on a new contract that was ratified on July 31.

The 175 members of the Teamsters Local 959 — the union of Alascom telecommunications employees who work as tower climbers and technicians — had been without a contract from AT&T since the end of February and voted to authorize a strike on July 13.

In a press release from the union, the teamsters said that Alascom telecommunications infrastructure serves as the “primary backbone” for all telecommunications throughout Alaska.

“Our members refused to let AT&T exploit Alaska or let our community down in the process,” Secretary-Treasurer of Local 959 Gary Dixon said. “While the company’s initial offers were inadequate, we are proud to have reached a fair agreement so our members can continue serving Alaska.

The contract agreed to with AT&T expires on Feb. 28, 2025.

In a press release, AT&T said that they had reached two agreements recently, and had ratified six contracts this year.

“Our efforts have again resulted in new competitive agreements that position AT&T and our union-represented employees for shared future success,” AT&T Senior Vice President of Global Human Resources and Labor Relations Jamie Barton said. “AT&T continues to recognize and reward our employees’ great work, which contribute to a positive customer experience.”

The members of Local 959 had filed over half a dozen unfair labor practice charges prior to the ratification of the new contract.

”Teamsters Local 959 members stood strong to win a contract that honors their contributions to AT&T and the State of Alaska,” Teamsters General President Sean M. O’Brien said. “These workers risk their own safety day-in and day-out in extreme weather conditions to repair equipment and keep vital phone and internet services running. This entire union is proud to successfully stand up to corporate greed alongside them.”

The Alascom telecommunications statewide infrastructure includes over 200 satellite, microwave, and other non-satellite-related radio systems, according to the release. The network includes the fiber optic cable from Anchorage to Prudhoe Bay, and provides communications services for the Alyeska Pipeline, as well as national security and defense systems, according to the release.

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