As AT&T wireless workers head into the 9th month of negotiations, one of their biggest issues at the bargaining table—offshoring of call center jobs—is continuing its devastating toll across the country. The latest community to fall victim to AT&T’s rampant offshoring is El Paso, Texas with a recent announcement that the company will close a local call center and cut hundreds of jobs.
According to El Paso Times, AT&T is closing a call center employing 278 people next month. In 2010, AT&T employed an estimated 2,444 workers in El Paso. After the call center closure, this number will stand at 450 people or less, an 82% drop:
The company once had three El Paso call centers with hundreds of employees… The planned closure of its last El Paso call center comes as the Dallas-based company relies more on contracted call centers in foreign countries.
AT&T’s offshoring has touched every region of the country. A recent report by CWA details how the telecom giant is shuttering call centers across the country at alarming rates. Since 2011, AT&T has eliminated more than 12,000 call center jobs in the U.S, or more than 30% of its call center employees across business divisions. Dozens of call centers have met the same fate as El Paso in recent years, including Detroit, Sacramento, Cleveland and Pittsburgh.
News of the closure comes as over 260 elected officials nationwide, including 39 members of Congress, have voiced their concern with AT&T’s practice of outsourcing and offshoring and its failure to come to the bargaining table with serious proposals that protect jobs.