Reporting Carl Stevens
BOSTON (CBS) – Thousands of Verizon workers hit the picket lines across the Northeast Monday, including the financial district in Boston.
Their contract expired Saturday without a new deal in place, so 45,000 members of the Communications Workers of America went on strike in several states.
With more people using smart phones, Verizon’s landline business is down, so it’s looking to lower costs, especially in health care and pensions.
Verizon has sent managers to help fill shifts in the states affected by the strike.
Anyone who crossed the picket line at the company’s New England headquarters on Franklin Street Monday was greeted by hundreds of picketers yelling “Scab!” and “Rats!”
“We’re also picketing the Verizon Wireless store and the response from our membership has been great,” IBEW Local 2222 spokesman Paul Feeney told WBZ NewsRadio 1030.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Carl Stevens reports
“The workers really understand what’s at stake. We’re talking about jobs. We’re trying to keep the jobs in the community and Verizon has made no bones about it, that they’d like to ship those jobs overseas to the Phillippines, places like Mexico.”