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Striking Verizon Workers Hold Candlelight Vigil Outside CEO’s NJ Home

MENDHAM, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Hundreds of Verizon workers held a candlelight vigil Thursday outside their CEO’s New Jersey home to protest benefit cuts.

They carried American flags and chanted “What’s disgusting? Union busting” outside Lowell McAdam’s Mendham residence. Police say the protest was peaceful and without incident.

About 45,000 Verizon workers from Massachusetts to Virginia walked off the job Aug. 7.

The Communications Workers of America and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers are fighting Verizon’s call for a pension freeze and for contributions to health insurance premiums, among other things.

Verizon Communications Inc. says it wants to change benefits that date from a time when the telecommunications marketplace was less competitive and landlines were ubiquitous.

The company has obtained court injunctions in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware to limit picketing.

Do you agree with the workers showing up outside the CEO’s home? Sound off in our comments section below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • A'ight

    Ahhhh, the picture to this story speaks 1000 words… There’s really nothing else to say.

  • Telecomm Analyst

    The sad outcome of this strike will be layoffs of 50%+ of the workforce, due to fiber optic requiring less upkeep. The outside plant installation of fiber optic is about 90% complete in the Verizon footprint. There is no need for that many installation technicians. Verizon will still sell FiOS, but will eventually not maintain the physical cable from Optical Line Terminal to the customer’s premise. This will be done by Frontier Comm (a Verizon subsidiary), or contractors. Verizon’s present workforce is 1/4 of what it was a decade earlier.

    Unfortunately, CWA/IBEW has not mentioned this to their members. I am all for unions, but I don’t see what this strike is going to accomplish. Verizon’s executives’ greed is shameful, but, hey, they are no different than elected officials that profit from wars.

  • Concern

    Unions, Charity Search Engines cents for Central Falls, RI.

    • car


      I feel sorry for you. Your greed and anger and pride in destroying people’s lives eminated from your post. Go to church and learn something.

      • James

        Nothing to do with greed. my business at that time was just about at break-even yet this union put a “gun” to my head to cave in or else they would put me out.” i held strong, defeated them and went on my way. they physically threatened me, slandered my name , put newspaper articles out…. then begged to come back for no increase at all.
        The behavior was horrible.
        that might explain the anger

  • LG

    Well said, I wonder why Americans question why companies rather operate in other countries.

    • Thomas

      Because slaves in this country make $7.50/hr; slaves in other countries make $0.25/hr or less. Why do you think Chinese workers were killing themselves at Chinese factories that make iPHones, becuase they made $0/hr. Luckily for them, there was horrible public and media relations in this country about this, and factory owners were embarrassed to raise their wages. But how many workers needed to kill themselves first before anything was done?

    • car

      Because they can get people to work for rice in other countries and Americans aren’t that desperate, yet, but we’re getting there.

  • James

    you are sour because you or a loved one is a striking worker in verizon. its evident by your defensive comments to anyone who’s anti union.
    unions are whats wrong in this county. a business owner takes all the financial risk , and then when the business can stand on its feet, here comes the mob to organize and be your partner.
    i am one of those business owners. only difference is, i didnt give in to the union demands, replaced every worker and put those strikers on that 10% unemployment list. unions tactics during strikes are disgraceful . the slander the business, ownership, yet they still want to work there. have some dignity…. if you dont like it, leave….

    • Joe

      ‘Unions are what’s wrong with this country”…Hey James, the next time your boss pulls you out of the bathroom for taking too much time, you’ll know why their is is still a need for unions! I’ll even bet you’ll wish you were in one! LMFAO!

      Instead of VERIZON spending a fortune on those stupid newspaper & radio ads, why don’t they take that $$ to the bargaining table????

      They are a disgrace to their employees & customers….shame on them for causing all these problems to everyone.

    • William

      That’s the problem with this situation… The UNION doesn’t see these points. They would if Verizon went belly-up and filed for was forced to have massive layoffs or shut down like so many once powerful US companies. Everyone in this country these days is asked to contribute towards health benefits and many workers have been dealing with 2% raises, no raises or worse PAY CUTS. I am not a business owner, but am damn happy to have a steady, good paying job with a good amount of job security….. sounds like the unions have once again poisoned their members minds- this has been our downfall for the past 30 years!!

      • June

        If you talk to some of the workers you would realize that they are mostly concerned about their pention and healthcare. If you have children you’ll understand why that’s a concern.

      • William

        Nice of you to assume that I don’t have children June… my opinion on how unions have ruined and are continuing to do so is my opinion… Yes I have children and always chose to stay away from union jobs… There are 2 sides to every strike. You shouldn’t assume that those who don’t agree are single, college kids with no family!! Any way I hope that both sides come to a fair agreement.

  • Danny K


  • Proud Union Member 45 Years

    as a long time union member i am embarassed that a union feels they must protest outside a company officials home to get results…..this is business. they should be professionals and keep it on a business level not stand in front of the man’s home. it’s wrong.

    • A Local Guy..

      I’ve got to agree… CEO or not, picketing is for the workplace, not for the family place….( Like they said in the Godfather: This is business, not personal..)

  • Ravan

    Why are they offended when the need arises to contribute to their own healthcare system? Everyone that smokes should pay half the Verizon healthcare system. Period. In fact, if you smoke – you won’t be entitled to healthcare benefits, you’ll have to pay for them yourself via weekly deductions from your paycheck.



  • wish i was working

    guess i will work for verizon.. I’m out of work… lucky for them they get paid…..

  • vito

    go to work!!! yesterday i called verizon customer service – 45 minutes on hold, did not get anyone… i didn’t know all of them in new jersey…what a great service

    • Ophelia

      Verizon has always been understaffed. It is a way to save money and squeeze workers. Saved money goes to executives and those with portfolios.

  • Roan Jackson

    Verizon CEO makes 55,000 a day …wow!!!!!!!!!!

  • John C

    Verizon workers are overpaid and they will never win any awards for getting the job done quickly. No, Union members have absolutely NO right to picket anyone’s home. I f the feel they are underpaid or there benefits are inadequate they have the right to QUIT and go find another job (Lots of luck)

    • Ophelia

      Other jobs pay $7.50 an hour. That is not a living wage. We have the right to protest peacefully in the USA.

      • James

        if you dont like the minimum wage amount, then dont protest your employer. tell the government. they set the minumum wage. its not ILLEGAL to pay minimum wage

      • Bill

        Of course you do, it’s just not very classy to bring it to someone’s home…. Home is home, work is work!!!

  • db

    No, I don’t agree with how the workers approached this. Going to any person’s house and behaving like this is not humane. Problems need to be solved in a dignified manner and this is not that.

  • mike

    What a shame, can’t people understand the value of a hard earned dollar?, be thankful all these 45k people have a job in this time of crisis, go to work and keep your mouth shut!

    • Ophelia

      The person who does not understand the value of a hard earned dollar is the Chief Executive at Verizon who earns $55,000 A DAY!

      I agree that anyone with a good-paying job should be grateful. However, workers must stand up and demand that fair pay continues. Workers need to be rewarded for length of time on the job along with knowledge developed over time.

      By the way, the median salary of the Verizon employee is $33,000.

      • usa does not want unions

        Is it the CEO fault that he went to college got great education then worked his butt off and made verizon wireless #1.He deserves the money would anyone of else turn it down .The average verizon worker knows the pay scale for the job when they apply.If they think getting a raise in this economy is there right fire them all.

    • Mike

      You sound like a true company stooge! Yes, we are thankful but not STUPID! This company is VERY solvent & cheap! They want to break this union but its NOT GONNA HAPPEN!

  • James

    Every worker in this country has the right to walk out the door if they don’t like the pay/conditions at their job. With the rate of unemployment in this county, these workers should be grateful for gainful employment and get back to work. if its so bad, quit and apply elsewhere.
    These picketers are all over the streets getting passing cars to honk their horns. do any one of them realize that every single passerby has their own set of personal problems and trully doesn’t care about their cause..
    verizon , stay strong….

    • Ophelia

      Are you sour because you do not enjoy fair pay at your own job? Or are you sour because you are out of a job? Unemployment continues because corporations refuse to hire. Corporate profits are sky high. Corporate greed is the reason for the high unemployment rate. Workers are expected to do the work of all those who have been laid off. And for what reason? So the CEO can collect $15 million as his annual pay package. So those with extra large stock portfolios can collect even more money.

      • Strike Out

        The company does NOT belong to the workers. The workers are only entitled to the wage that the company is willing to pay them. What the executives receive as compensation is NOT the workers business. This is America. If you do not like the wage you are earning, then go DO something about it. Get another job.Go back to school, or start your own business. Oh right, that doesn’t work anymore now that this is becoming a socialist nation under Obama.

    • Thomas

      Verizon CEO: $55,000 a day
      Average American Worker: $7.50/hr
      [not at Verizon, but any other of many American companies]

      Sure sounds fair to me.

      • Thomas


        Verizon CEO: $55,000 a day
        Average American Slave: $7.50/hr
        [not at Verizon, but any other of many American companies]

        Sure sounds fair to me.

  • Philip S Blackwell

    As one of, if not THE major carrier, Verizon should be a shamed of themselves. This comes at a time when our country is going through a forced transition to futher push the average American further into a poverious society. This just another attempt at reversing organized labor. Look at the rate encreases verizon has just saddled everyone with. Come ON!!!!!!

  • Ellen Burke

    Yes, I agree, as something needs to be done to get things moving. Every day that Verizon execs and union heads don’t settle means just another day that they have not done their jobs. If we didn’t do our jobs, we would be fired!

  • JasonS

    These pig ignorant thugs were violently intimidating a crew of Verizon workers on Madison Avenue at 11pm a week or so ago, so much so that the police were called to restrain them. They were screaming abuse and threats and raising their fists. Everyone who witnessed it was pretty much disgusted. Give these morons NOTHING.

    • Roan Jackson

      u an idiot

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