A Smaller Strike at Verizon Wireless

Verizon Communications Inc.’s argument to striking wireline workers is they have to accept deep cuts to benefits to help offset falling sales at its traditional phone business, but 70 striking union members are mounting a different fight—they work for the company’s highly profitable wireless unit.

While most of the 45,000 Verizon workers who were on strike for a fourth day Wednesday are employed by the company’s land-line business, a tiny portion—less than 0.2%—are part of its Verizon Wireless operations, a legacy from a merger 15 years ago. These employees, who are the only unionized workers at the wireless arm, are part of the striking Communications Workers of America union but are negotiating separately with the company.

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