July 23, 2020
URGENT: ABC PAYROLL CHANGE
Today most members in our ABC bargaining units received an email from WDT Human Resources announcing that the Company will change your payroll back to bi-weekly effective August 7th. The email message begins with the phrase, “Based on your Union’s request…”
THAT STATEMENT IS A LIE!
The truth is that back in October 2019, ABC gave notice to NABET-CWA that they intended to institute a Kronos timekeeping system, which they claimed was essential since the current ManNet payroll system was well beyond its technological life expectancy. At the time, ABC insisted that they had to change payroll for NABET-CWA represented employees from bi-weekly to weekly in order to accommodate the new KRONOS system. Your union, having dealt with Kronos systems with other employers in the broadcast industry, rejected that argument and pointed out that Section 30.2 of the Master Agreement mandates bi-weekly payroll.
Despite objections raised by the Union, ABC went ahead and unilaterally implemented weekly payroll in all offices of the Company prematurely and with a horribly flawed roll-out. NABET-CWA filed a national grievance protesting both the change to weekly payroll as well as the utilization of the KRONOS system for contemporaneous timekeeping. That grievance was moved to arbitration and is currently being heard by Impartial Umpire Carol Wittenberg. The first two hearing days were held June 22 & 23. The arbitration hearing is scheduled to resume on Tuesday July 28th.
One week before the arbitration began, Sean Quinn, Vice President of Labor Relations, emailed the union offering to return to bi-weekly payroll in the hope of eliminating that portion of the national grievance. NABET-CWA did not agree to the offer, because the violation of the contract had already occurred and the dispute was scheduled for arbitration. At no time did the Union “request” that the Company upend your financial lives – once again - by returning to bi-weekly payroll.
THAT CHARACTERIZATION IS ANOTHER LIE!
NABET-CWA is moving swiftly with an appropriate legal response to the Company’s improper actions. In the meantime, we urge you to carefully review your paystubs, as well as all deductions, to confirm that your entire paycheck is correct. If you do not receive your proper pay, contact your Local Union office to discuss additional actions that can be taken with your State Wage and Hour Commission.
We are sensitive to the inconvenience, confusion and disruption that this situation has caused for you and your families. We would apologize if any of this had been the fault of the Union, but this unnecessary chaos is squarely on the shoulders of ABC Labor Relations. Sadly, during the time of this COVID-19 Pandemic, when our members are risking their lives to keep ABC and their operations on the air, the Company is playing games with your payroll -- certainly not a good omen for our upcoming Master Agreement negotiations.