45,000 Verizon Workers Strike, Sending Company Into Contingency Plan

A block of Verizon workers took to picket lines after negotiations between unions and the company broke down. The 45,000 striking workers represent a fifth of Verizon’s workforce, and the company has enacted a contingency plan to make sure customers experience a “limited disruption in service.”

The Daily Mail reports the dispute bubbled over after workers balked at more than 100 concessions involving pensions, health care and workplace procedures.

Workers involved include members of the Communications Workers of America. The CWA sniped that Verizon ” continued to seek to strip away 50 years of collective bargaining gains for middle-class workers and their families,” while Verizon said the changes it requested are necessary to strengthen its wireline business, which it claims has been declining for a decade.

Verizon said employees have been trained to step in and perform emergency assignments to keep the company running.

Communication breakdown: Thousands of Verizon workers up and down east coast go on strike [Daily Mail via Slashdot]