AT&T workers walk out

About 37,000 AT&T Inc T.N workers, or less than 14 percent of the company's total workforce, began a three-day strike on Friday after failing to reach an agreement with the No. 2 USA wireless carrier over new contracts.

The strike includes DirecTV technicians in California and Nevada.

Verizon Wireless workers, who went on a 49-day strike a year ago, are being urged to join the picket lines in support of their fellow union workers. The union says AT&T has offered a 2 percent wage hike this year.

Workers are fighting for affordable benefits, fair wages, job security and outsourcing, according to CWA. The union highlighted the outsourcing issue again Friday, noting that AT&T has cut 12,000 US call-center jobs since 2011. However, the company has not ruled out the possibility of a strike happening reiterating that it will work to ensure that customers continue to enjoy their services regardless of the outcome.

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The strike is expected to last three days.

In Maine, 65 workers at nine AT&T retail stores are on strike and will be picketing outside some of the stores this weekend, said Serina DeWolfe, president of the CWA Local 1400, representing workers in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

"For AT&T upper management to pin this on CWA leadership is a bunch of malarkey", rebutted Wagner.

Editor's Note: This story has been corrected to reflect a strike deadline of 3 p.m. Friday.

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In the months that followed, that jobs report was revised down to say that just 24,000 jobs were added in May of previous year. Thousands of members with the Communication Workers of America (CWA) union are preparing to hit the picket lines and start striking. Our demands are clear and have been for months: fair contract or strike.

As at most telecommunications companies, AT&T's wireless business is growing faster and is more profitable than its wireline side.

The majority of the 21,000 union members in AT&T's wireless operations work at small AT&T Mobility retail shops, employing about a dozen workers on average.

"We're prepared, and we will continue working hard to serve our customers", Phil Hayes, an AT&T representative, said in the statement.

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