SBC Strike

Union workers at SBC Communications aren't happy with a potential increase in the cost of their health care. On Friday, they walked the sidewalks of downtown Eau Claire to show their opposition.

The 163 members of the Communications Workers of America in Eau Claire are on strike, and several members plan to keep picketing through Monday. They include technicians, engineers, and directory assistance operators.

Even though the union plans a four-day strike, the timetable is hardly set in stone.

"I believe it will be four days and that's it, but that's my personal belief," said C.W.A. Local 4640 President Kathy Brenden. "That could change. It does not mean we wouldn't come back out after the four days and at some point in the future go on a general strike."

Meanwhile, SBC officials in Milwaukee say they value their employees, and look forward to seeing them back in house.

"We expect to see our workers return to their offices on Tuesday morning," said SBC Spokesperson Howard Riefs.

Riefs also added that the employees currently pay anywhere from four to seven percent of their health insurance costs. SBC's current proposal would bump that figure up to 10 percent.

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