On April 18th 2022, CWA Local 7200 Area Vice-President Sundee Severson and CWA Local 7250 Area Vice-President Charli Haataja submitted this letter along with a petition calling for a permanent work from home (WFH) option for AT&T workers to AT&T management and CWA leadership. The petition has been signed by more that 1500 AT&T workers and their family members.
April 18th, 2022
To whom it may concern:
We appreciate the flexibility the company has shown in negotiating the temporary work from home (WFH) option with CWA that expires September 30th. This has been essential in keeping workers safe during this pandemic and periods of civil unrest in Minneapolis.
However, the pandemic is far from over. Wastewater sampling in Minneapolis confirms an 80% increase since March. Recently Philadelphia reinstated their indoor mask mandate. While the Covid-19 vaccines seem to be lessening the severity of covid cases, there is still significant risk for the spread of Covid-19, especially for people gathering indoors, and many of us are extremely anxious of a return to ‘business as usual’ that puts us at risk.
As we are already more than 2 years into working from home, we believe it is in the best interest of workers and the company to bargain for a permanent WFH option.
The benefits of a permanent WFH option are astronomical:
- Better Attendance -
- Can still work from home with cold or allergies - would otherwise fail COVID assessment
- Fewer Job Accommodations
- Reduction in FMLA use
- Fewer tardies - way more individual control of when you are arriving at your workstation to log in.
- Needs of the Business -
- Quicker and easier responses asking employees for overtime WFH, in short amount of time
- Easier to track productivity/activity due to everything having electronic footsteps
- Work productivity increased
- Financial impacts -
- Cost savings for the company for building utilities, maintenance and supplies
- Reduced cost for workers for commute costs (gas and/or bus-fare)
- Reduced cost for workers for daycare needs.
- Reduced meal costs
- Employee well-being -
- Employee morale significantly increased
- no overheard office politics, no personality conflicts, less dissatisfying small talk.
- Eliminates exposure to sick co-workers
- no shared air, bathrooms, breakrooms, water-fountains, etc.
- Fewer distractions
- Reduced stress
- Increased job satisfaction
- No commute
- More time for family/friends before and after work
- No traffic, no accidents, no road-rage.
- Increased ability to be at work when dangerous road conditions exist.
- Employee safety - workers are anxious about returning to work in an environment with high rates of petty crime.
We have attached the results from a petition of our members all in favor of a permanent WFH option. Our intention was for this petition to represent workers favoring this option, but it has also been signed by members of our families and communities who have felt the impact of our temporary WFH over the last two years. Please take these points and our petition in mind in any negotiations you have with the CWA T&T office over a permanent WFH option or during WHF extension talks, should they occur.
Thank you for your time,
CWA Local 7200
Area Vice President
612-722-7200 (union hall)
CWA Local 7250
Area Vice President
612-332-7552 (union hall)