Randy Yohe Published

W.Va. Communications Workers Union Leader Surprised, Pleased With Tentative Frontier Contract Agreement

Cell phone or mobile service tower in forested area of West Virginia providing broadband service.steheap/Adobe Stock

Now heading to a rank and file vote, the tentative four-year contract agreement reached Saturday between the Communications Workers of America and Frontier Communications covers about 1,400 mostly West Virginia based employees. 

CWA Local 2001 President J.D. Thompson said he thinks hard work and employee diligence contributed to the positive outcome.

“Our bargaining committee put in long, hard hours,” Thompson said. “And the employees around the state who participated in mobilization and just keeping the public aware, we were in it for the long haul.”

Thompson said he appreciates that the contract maintains health benefits, includes wage increases, and – with $1.2 billion coming to the state for broadband expansion – keeps all-important job security provisions. 

“A large part of our membership is covered by a no layoff provision,” Thompson said. “With the fiber work that’s coming in, it maintains that Frontier workers, union workers, will be the ones getting the lion’s share of that work.”

A Frontier Communications spokesperson released this statement:

“We have been working constructively with CWA and are pleased to have reached a tentative agreement that is good for our employees, our customers and our business. We recognize the critical importance of our communications services to West Virginia. Our goal throughout the negotiations process has been to continue to provide our employees with some of the best jobs in the state, while enabling us to successfully operate our business for years to come. This agreement accomplishes that.” 

Thompson said contract details should be sent out to the membership within the next couple of days.

“And then, shortly thereafter, we’ll be doing the vote with membership to either accept it or decline it,” he said. “We’re hoping to have everything wrapped up by the 29th of September.”