Rob Rosenblatt

Annville, PA

I was in a position with the company, where I had employees working under me. And, you know, we were told by senior management that these were benefits that we’d have for the rest of our lives, if we put in X amount of years and retired under the guidelines set forth by the company.  So, yeah, as a matter of fact, it’s put us all in a position where…of…well, I guess the word is – I don’t want to say “distrust” – but, for sure, disappointment, stress, and even things that I had to say to my employees were not upheld by the corporation.

Working with a company 27 + years, and putting the time and effort into the business, being able to retire early from the company was a goal.  I mean, I worked there since I was 21 years old.  And now I’m in a situation where I won’t be eligible for Medicare/Medicaid until I’m, I believe, 65/66 year old.  I’ve got roughly a 10-year window, that I’ve got to pay higher premiums on a lesser retirement package or healthcare package, and secondly the fear that I could lose it, because I am with a company that’s in bankruptcy. 

I started with the company in 1975.  Worked through 2002 and retired from Verizon.  A few years after my retirement, I was sent a letter in the mail, and I was told I was going to be moved from Verizon to a company called Idearc, which quite frankly, at that time, I didn’t know who Idearc was. But basically, we were told that anybody that was part of Verizon that was in the directory line of business would be spun off, and we would then fall under this Idearc umbrella, if you will.  And we would lose our benefits that we had, that we were promised and that we worked so hard for for 27 years under Verizon and spun off and we would then have our healthcare benefits provide by this Idearc company, which I don’t know which, was for sure disheartening, possibly even illegal, but for sure inappropriate at that time.  And then subsequent to that, we find out that the company’s in bankruptcy.

So the long and the short of it is, you put a lot of years, a lot of hard work and dedication into a company, expect to retire with that company -- I had moved my family a couple of times -- and now I find out that I’m…Verizon’s a solid company that has a great future, and I’m with a spin-off with -- you know, I don’t even know how many employees -- a few thousand employees. 

The quality of my healthcare package has declined, and price of it has went up – my portion that I have to pay.  That’s number one.

As of this year, we noticed that not only is the price higher, but the quality of the program is lower.  And the big fear beyond that is, what’s going to happen with the benefits, because we’re with a company that’s in bankruptcy.