36,000 Verizon workers have chosen to strike on Wednesday. The strike was called after their unions and the company’s officials failed to reach an agreement over pension and healthcare cutes.
This marks the largest strike in the United States since the same Verizon workers walked off the job in 2011, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. That strike was larger with 45,000 workers striking.
Most of the workers who have gone on strike service Verizon’s landline phone and FiOS broadband networks.
The strike was a long time coming. Workers have been on the job despite a contract that expired in August.
The Communication Workers of America has filed a large list of complaints against the company, including the fact that Verizon has sent 5,000 jobs to workers in Mexico, the Philippines, and the Dominican Republic.
The union also says Verizon is adding more low-wage, non-union contracts and asking workers to leave their homes to work out of states for increasing amount of time.
“Verizon’s corporate greed isn’t just harming workers’ families, it’s hurting customers as well,” the CWA said in a statement.
Verizon continues to make record profits on its wireless side but its landline business is actually experiencing declines.
Verizon said is has been working with the union since June and that it has good intentions to reach a new deal.
“It’s regrettable that union leaders have called a strike, a move that hurts all of our employees,” said Marc Reed, Verizon’s chief administrative officer.
“Unfortunately, union leaders have their own agenda rooted in the past and are ignoring today’s digital realities. Calling a strike benefits no one, and brings us no closer to resolution.”
Verizon says it has plans in place to serve customers during the strike.