Contracts expire for many at AT&T; talks continue

4:43 AM, Apr 9, 2012   |    comments
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NEW YORK (AP) - A spokeswoman for the Communications Workers of America says "everyone wants to get this done soon" -- referring to negotiations with AT&T on behalf of about 40,000 landline workers.

Contracts expired over the weekend and negotiators met Sunday for more talks. The workers are staying on the job but the lack of a contract leaves open the possibility of a strike, should talks break down.

AT&T spokesman Marty Richter also said talks were ongoing. He said earlier that the company has been planning for the possibility for a strike for two years, and managers and vendors will step in to keep service running if there is one.

At issue for the union are job protection clauses and health care premiums and co-payments. AT&T says it wants employees to shoulder more of their growing health care costs and more leeway to downsize its shrinking landline operations.

The Associated Press

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