AT&T Union Launches FirstNet Advocacy Website
Thursday, October 18, 2018 | Comments

The Communications Workers of America (CWA), the union for AT&T employees, announced a new advocacy initiative and website to increase the availability of information about the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet). The website is FirstResponderVoice.org.

FirstResponderVoice.org aims to be a resource for first responders — professional and volunteer, urban and rural — and other public-safety stakeholders, including IT directors, emergency communications coordinators, private citizens, and elected officials, to learn how to take advantage of and stay abreast of developments related to FirstNet, a statement said.

“FirstResponderVoice.org will help me educate and advocate for my volunteer fire department’s communications needs,” said Vinny Galvin, a 25-year volunteer firefighter in Dutchess County, New York, and member of CWA Local 1101. “It’s a fantastic resource that’s going to have a huge impact on making sure that firefighters like me across the country have access to this life-saving system.”

The site offers the following features news, monthly newsletter and events alerts; a directory of selected FirstNet subscribers nationwide; downloadable toolkit, including step-by-step FirstNet subscription instructions; and webinars and online training related to FirstNet.

“Our members who are professional and volunteer first responders are enthusiastic about FirstNet,” said Bianca Garcia, CWA’s FirstNet program coordinator. “They know better than anyone how absolutely vital it is to have a clearinghouse for stakeholders so that they can be informed, empowered, and agile advocates for their communities.”

CWA represents tens of thousands of AT&T workers, public-safety professionals and first responders across the United States and was an active member of the Public Safety Alliance, a coalition of first responder groups that was instrumental in supporting the creation of FirstNet. CWA also represents the customer care agents in Cerritos, California, and Greensboro, North Carolina, who are trained to handle FirstNet customer service calls from first responders, a statement said.

The site is funded by CWA, not AT&T, although AT&T executives review the content of the website. AT&T will not control content but AT&T will ensure all of the website’s materials are factual and up to date. CWA will also seek to connect potential subscribers with AT&T to get demonstrations and other FirstNet information.

AT&T is the only union wireless carrier.

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