Citing complaints including that Verizon was not expanding FiOS and instead shedding workers who installed the video service, about 39,000 workers struck Verizon starting at 6 a.m. April 13.
The unions had set the deadline earlier in the week.
That news of the strike came late Tuesday after Verizon had suggested it would submit to mediation if the strike deadline was extended, and CWA-IBEW countered that offering was essentially a distraction.
Verizon has said it was ready to continue to serve its customers strike or no, including by having trained non-union workers over many months anticipating this possibility.
The contract with CWA-IBEW members expired last August.
Members of CWA Local 2222 said its supporters would be picketing outside Verizon's Arlington, Va., offices Wednesday. The unions said elected leaders would also join three picket lines in New York at noon.
“It’s regrettable that union leaders have called a strike, a move that hurts all of our employees,” said Marc Reed, Verizon’s chief administrative officer, in a statement. “Since last June, we’ve worked diligently to try and reach agreements that would be good for our employees, good for our customers and make the wireline business more successful now and in the future. Unfortunately, union leaders have their own agenda rooted in the past and are ignoring today’s digital realities. Calling a strike benefits no one, and brings us no closer to resolution.”
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