Hartford Insurance Scandal Unfolds, and Dialing Up the Future of Call Centers

Nov 18, 2013

State Farm Call Center.

According to a union count, Connecticut has nearly 50,000 call center workers, mostly in the telecom industry. A growing sector for this industry is health care, especially after the Obamacare rollout.

Call center companies like Maximus have been hired to man the phones as people try to sign up for new health plans under the law - and that’s meant big business across the country. This hour, a look at call centers: how they work, what the culture is like, and just how many of these jobs are going overseas.

WNPR’s Jeff Cohen has been covering call centers and health care for us and NPR, but he’s also been following a story in Hartford that seems to get stranger by the day. Earl O’Garro was hired by the city to handle its insurance business, and a bunch of money went missing. There’s now a federal grand jury investigation, and O’Garro can’t seem to stay out of the news, with more money problems, and now an arrest over a domestic incident. Jeff will catch us up on the latest.