AT&T promises jobs to 200 workers affected by closing of Pittsburgh call centers
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AT&T will try to reassign within the company as many of the 200 employees as possible who will be affected by the closing of two Pittsburgh call centers in May.
Marty Richter, AT&T spokesman based in St. Louis, Mo., today refuted claims by the employees' unions, Communications Workers of America, AFL-CIO, Local 13550 and 13500, that declared in a news release on Friday that the 200 employees would lose their jobs.
Mr. Richter released this statement today: "Due to ongoing significant declines in call volumes at two of our landline call centers in Pittsburgh, we're consolidating work that is currently done there in other AT&T facilities. Many of the affected employees will be eligible for other positions in one of the buildings, and all of the affected employees are being offered the opportunity to follow their work, and a relocation allowance.
"Those who elect not to follow their work can apply for other AT&T positions in the area. Those who choose not to follow the work and leave the business will receive severance."
The two call centers are located at 635 Grant St., Downtown, and at 1500 Penn Ave., Strip District. He said the Downtown location is not closing and that half of the affected employees would be eligible for other positions in that same building, or can follow their work with a relocation allowence. The other center is in a leased building and all the work done there is being consolidated into other facilities.
"This is part of our landline business, the part of the industry that continues to decline," Mr. Richter said of the call centers. "In the last five years, AT&T has lost more than 48 percent of our wired-access lines -- nearly 30 million lines," he said, as customers increasingly disconnect their landline phones and rely solely on cell phones.
But other parts of the business are growing and that's where most of the employees will be shifted to, he said, adding that in the last year, AT&T has hired 400 employees for its retail centers in Pennsylvania and plans are to hire another 75.
The unions are expected to hold a rally at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday in response to the closing of the call centers.
First Published March 16, 2013 11:44 am