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Local Verizon Communications workers have begun their picket against the company.

The employees, all from different parts of Western New York, are walking Jackson Street in shifts to protest company changes in wage, pension, health benefits and workplace policy.

Kirk Myhill of Medina (above, second from left) says he and his co-workers have plenty of experience picketing their own company.

"Back in '89, we picketed for seventeen weeks," he says. "And everything we want today, we fought for back in '89.

"We had brothers back in 1971 that were out on a seven-month strike, for the identical benefits."

The picketers are part of local Communications Workers of America unions Local 1117, Local 1122, and Local 1115. There are also picketers from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, though none in Batavia today.

Myhill says they're prepared to picket for as long as it takes to win their benefits back, even at the risk of losing their jobs when they return to work.

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