November 26, 2013

Alex Shalom, a teller at a Bank of America branch in New York City, has started an online petition protesting the bank’s adoption of video ATM kiosks, according to various media reports.

Bank of America plans to use the video ATM’s to replace in-branch tellers like himself with call center employees who will be paid a lower wage, Shalom claims in his petition, which has gotten more than a 1,000 signatures.

[Check Out This Report On Branch Closures: Branch Networks on a Downward Slope ]

“Being a bank teller is all about building a personal connection with our customers, something that I couldn’t do through a video screen,” Shalom says in the petition. “My coworkers and I care about meeting the needs of our customers, and we deserve to make a decent wage while doing so.”

A Bank of America spokesperson told ABC News that there is no difference in pay between the bank’s in-branch tellers and call center tellers, and said the bank has no plans of cutting in-branch teller jobs.

The bank has now deployed its video ATM’s that allow customers to communicate with a remote teller in 61 locations across the country, according to reports.

Bank of America has closed 183 branches over the last 12 months - more than any other major bank in the U.S., according to a recent report by SNL Financial. Brian Moynihan, the bank’s CEO, said in a recent interview that the bank has now cut its branches from 6,100 down to 5,400, and has plans to reduce those down to 5,000.

Jonathan Camhi is a graduate of the City University of New York's Graduate School of Journalism, where he focused on international reporting and interned at the Hindustan Times in Delhi, ...