AT&T workers in California and Nevada call a three-day strike

The workers would be joined in their protest by CWA members in AT&T's DirecTV and wireline businesses.

About 37,000 AT&T Inc workers, or less than 14 percent of the company's total workforce, began a three-day strike on Friday after failing to reach an agreement with the No. 2 USA wireless carrier over new contracts.

AT&T Wireless workers - some 21,000 of them - have given management until Friday, May 19 at 3 p.m. ET to come to the table with "serious proposals that invest in good jobs with a future". Master said the company had rebuffed a request for data that would clarify the extent of the practice and other changes to its workforce.

"We're continuing to bargain, and it's baffling as to why union leadership would consider calling a strike one when we're offering terms in which their members - some of whom average from $115,000 to $148,000 in total compensation - will be better off financially", AT&T spokesman Marty Richter told RCR Wireless News. The CWA says the strike will last until Monday morning and could include as many as 40,000 employees.

The group is from the Communications Workers of America Local 4320. The company has refused to move on any of a long list of union demands around pay, health care costs, performance incentives and outsourcing of jobs.

This weekend's strike comes almost two months after 17,000 AT&T workers in Nevada and California walked off the job.

With over 200,000 employees in the U.S, AT&T is the country's largest telecom company. CWA was negotiating on contract conditions, wages and on job security.

No one from the company could be reached for comment.

Update: As of 3 pm EDT on Friday, 40,000 AT&T employees have gone on strike.

We're prepared, and we will continue working hard to serve our customers. Highlighted in a new report produced by the CWA called "Offshoring Customer Service: How AT&T Lowers Standards for Workers and Consumers through its Global Race to the Bottom", the union claims the company has shed more than 12,000 in-house call center jobs since 2011.

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