Thursday, June 15, 2023 (6:00 CST) – Today AT&T announced a surplus impacting their employees in Illinois. The job cuts will affect workers represented by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 21 (IBEW 21).
AT&T is once again turning its back on rural Midwestern Americans in favor of workers in Bratislava, Slovakia. AT&T executives have devised a scheme to terminate workers in Peoria, Illinois, and have already moved some of their work out of the United States. In November 2022, IBEW Local Union 21 leadership learned of the ploy to send some work from our Peoria Center to Bratislava and a grievance was filed to stop the movement and demanded that the Peoria center be properly staffed. Rather than working to continue, as well as to possibly expand employment opportunities for the hard-working people of Peoria, IL., these Texas fat-cat executives are now choosing to close this American call center.
Showing how out of touch the company’s leadership is with everyday Americans, according to a recent Bloomberg article when talking about AT&T’s restructuring, CEO John Stankey said, “If they want to be a part of building a great culture and environment, they’ll come along on these adjustments and changes. Others may decide, given the station of life they are in, that they want to move in a different direction.”
Unfortunately, most average blue-collar Americans will never reach Stankey’s station in life. They are simply happy working hard and taking care of their families and don’t need or desire the perks the 1% feel they are entitled to from the labor of those they feel are below them.
This corporate fat-cat decision will have consequences when AT&T applies for government hand outs. All eyes are on AT&T. We know AT&T will claim that they consolidated the rest of the work into another center in the United States, but come on, that is Texas-AT&T speak, for we will be moving it to Bratislava when nobody is looking.
AT&T won’t be able to buy their way to favorable legislation as they are alleged to have done in Illinois and in other states in our great Union. An injury to one is an injury to all. It will take all Americans to expose and fight back against AT&T’s corporate greed.
Voluntary Separation Packages – VSIPP
Voluntary Separation Packages (VSIPP) are available to eligible employees who are not affected by today’s surplus announcement as defined in Article 30.43 of our AT&T Contract. If you would like to save the job of someone whose job is at risk, please consider turning in your VSIPP application today.
If you are interested, contact your manager. You must electronically file for a VSIPP by 5 p.m. (CST) Tuesday, June 20, 2023. If you have trouble accessing the AT&T's online form, you must talk to your manager!
The announced surplus affecting IBEW Local 21 members are as follows:
33 - Customer Account Specialists - Peoria
1 - Technical Associate - Peoria
2 - Engineering Assistant - Wheaton
1 - Engineering Assistant - Blue Island
1 - Engineering Assistant - Oak Brook
1 - Telecommunication Specialist 10 S Canal Chicago
We realize members have questions and concerns, and that rumors may circulate. Your managers should not try to interpret the contractual language or how this process will work. If you have questions, contact your IBEW Local 21 Union Representative. The IBEW 21 staff is available and will help you during this difficult process. Our staff directory can be found here.