CWA Local 3611 Mandate Update
Covid 19 Mandate
While this is certainly still an uphill battle, I was able to rally the other presidents of North Carolina to sign onto a letter that I drafted to commissioner of labor, Josh Dobson. While it seems at first “why not just go directly to the governors office?”-given that he had already mandated the vaccine for the public sector, it was advised by our legislative committee that appealing to the commissioner of labor, who happens to be openly anti-mandate, would be an avenue better taken. Remember, if you do not plan to be vaccinated by the company imposed deadline, apply through the company for your related religious/medical accommodations.
More to follow, stay tuned…
From CWA Local 3611 re: AT&T’s recent release of its COVID-19 vaccine mandate
To begin, contrary to the wording of the emails sent out to employees regarding their process in mandating employees be vaccinated, the CWA, at the international level, has adamantly opposed any sort of employer mandate. While the Union encourages everyone to be vaccinated, we are vehemently against at&t, or any other private entity for that matter, making the decision for us, as it is a gross overreach of their scope of authority. CWA demanded that at&t enter into bargaining over its proposed mandate-not because we were willing to concede, but because as the current labor laws are written, in the event of a proposed change to condition of employment, without bargaining, the employer may proceed with its rollout as planned. Several counter proposals were submitted, included financial incentives in lieu of a forced mandate. The company refused any proposal short of its proposed mandate, leaving bargaining at an impasse; this resulted in the company, under current labor law, able to force its mandate. Immediately at the impasse, CWA demanded at&t enter into effects bargaining (how the process will play out, as it were; how the mandate will affect our members, etc) in order to determine how the process will be implemented. While we were able to agree on the 1 month deadline extension from 01jan2022 to 01feb2022, and the 60 day “unpaid reconsideration period” (unpaid suspension, complete with B-Form,) and “rehirable status” modifier, the company refused to move on any of its other assertions.
At this time, it is imperative to keep checking these spaces for updates, as this is a quickly evolving issue. The company will still have to comply with the requirements set forth within the Americans With Disabilities Act and the Civil Rights Act.
While the CWA did literally all that it could have to stop this mandate at their level, there is still work to be done at the state and local levels, and rest assured (and I know that this is a big ask given the bombshell that the company dropped yesterday) that Local 3611 is still combatting this gross overreach by at&t.
More to come…