Community Groups Protest Against Verizon

March 20, 2012 Updated Mar 20, 2012 at 6:04 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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Community Groups Protest Against Verizon

March 20, 2012 Updated Mar 20, 2012 at 6:04 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY –( WKBW / RELEASE ) Community groups rallied outside of Verizon Communications to call on the company to compensate their workers fairly and save 45,000 middle class jobs. The Coalition highlighted Verizon’s refusal to negotiate a fair contract with its union workforce and the company’s push to outsource jobs overseas, and cut employee healthcare, retirement, and disability benefits, despite making more than $19 billion in profits and paying its top executives $283 million over the past four years.

“Verizon has demanded excessive and unfair concessions from workers even though the company is making record profits,” said Andy Reynolds, an organizer with the Coalition for Economic Justice. “Verizon is more concerned with padding their bottom line than they are with meeting the needs of their workers or our communities. The company is placing profits over people.”

The event was planned in coordination with national actions led by community groups and unionized Verizon workers that are taking place in cities across the country during the week of March 19th. In Buffalo, the advocates also delivered a singing telegram to Verizon Communications officials to urge the company to act in the best interests of its workforce and the community.

Verizon sent a statement to Eyewitness News in reaction to the rally:

The union’s various rallies and “Day of Action” have no impact on the bargaining process.

Verizon needs to make meaningful changes to its contracts in order to be competitive.

Progress towards a new contract can only be achieved through engagement at the bargaining table – not at a union rally.

John Bonomo
Director-Verizon Media Relations

Eyewitness News will have the latest on the story.