Misleading AT&T Articles
December 31, 2020
As we end 2020 we must remind all members especially those working at AT&T to question the sources of articles written about the employers represented by IBEW Local 21. We often get calls and emails from employees and retirees of AT&T regarding online articles concerning the direction the company “is taking” on a variety of topics.
The most recent exposé relates to the benefit and retirement packages for employees of AT&T. The article puts fear into the reader by making claims about alleged company memos and the author’s interpretation of plan descriptions and other documents, that as an outsider the writner thinks they have the expert knowledge to fully understand. The author fails to mention that there is a difference between management benefits plans and those for union employees who are protected by collective bargaining agreements. They fail to relay that all changes for Unionized employees must be bargained and then cannot be changed without Union consent.
The piece goes on to say that the anonymous author’s clients should contact them and the company’s HR department so that their clients can be fully informed. They spread rumors while failing to clearly disclose that the sponsor of the article is a financial services company that seeks investments from AT&T employees. These snake oil salesmen strike fear into employees of AT&T in an attempt to suck them in as clients.
As leaders of the largest telecommunications local in the country we hear these rumors and thank our members who bring them to our attention. Your Union Officers and staff are well versed in the actual benefit packages, 401K and pensions plans negotiated for our members and retirees. We are here to clear up the misinformation being spread by these other so called experts. The leadership of IBEW Local 21 will give you the truth even when you might not like hearing it. We rather you hear it from us rather than from those who are just looking to capitalize on your vulnerabilities for their own profits.
It is extremely frustrating to us that the irresponsible actions of these greedy bastards are causing our membership this type of panic and concerns during the holiday season. If the misinformation cited in the most recent online rag referenced above is causing you unwanted aggravation, questions and concerns regarding your benefits eligibility and/or landmark dates related to eligibility for certain retirement benefits, please contact your Area/Chief steward or Business representative for your most immediate concerns. They can assist you and/or direct you to one of our Benefit coordinators, who can further assist you if needed. Their contact information can be found here.