Hotelier targeted by global boycott for worker abuse
Hyatt Hurts says UNITE HERE dozens of organizations, musicians, NFL players and long term 'associates' 7 days of demos planned in USA and UK
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The unions are calling for a global boycott of Hyatt Hotel in response to what they claim is the hotel company's extensive abuse of their workers and low wages.
The NFL Players Association, UNITE HERE, workers, students and renowned musicians will combine forces to support the boycott, which will include a full week of demonstrations at Hyatt Hotels and other actions in 20 US cities, including Los Angeles, Honolulu, San Francisco, Chicago, Baltimore, Indianapolis and Boston.
A press conference was held yesterday at the National Press Club in Washington DC announcing a global boycott of Hyatt Hotels for extensive worker abuse and a week of protest activities at Hyatt locations in cities around the country, including Los Angeles, Honolulu, San Francisco, Chicago, Baltimore, Indianapolis and Boston. A demonstration is also planned in London, UK.
The global boycott marks the largest escalation to date in an ongoing campaign for basic workers rights. Says the coalition: "Hyatt has singled itself out as the worst employer in the hotel industry by abusing its housekeepers and other hotel workers, replacing longtime employees with minimum wage temporary workers, and imposing dangerous and health-threatening workloads on those who remain."
"Thousands of community supporters are joining Hyatt workers in this call to boycott the hotel company. By choosing to not eat, meet or sleep at Hyatt, they are urging friends, family and the public to send a clear message to Hyatt that its abuse and exploitation of hotel workers will not be tolerated. In response, Hyatt workers have taken bold steps to end mistreatment, speaking publicly about abuses, going on strike, and now joining in a global boycott of Hyatt."
The global boycott has also been endorsed by the IUF--the global federation of trade unions--and virtually every union representing hotel workers worldwide.
- Hyatt's subcontracting is destroying good jobs and exploiting immigrant workers.
- Hyatt housekeepers suffer abuse and face dangerous workloads
- Hyatt has refused to remain neutral as non-union hotel workers organize.
- Hyatt turned heat lamps on striking workers during a brutal heat wave.
Hyatt responded: "At Hyatt, the satisfaction and wellbeing of our associates is fundamental to the success of our business because they are the ones who provide hospitality to our guests. Hyatt provides industry-leading wage and benefits packages, maintains an outstanding workplace safety record, and is a recognized leader in promoting a diverse workforce. That is why the average tenure of Hyatt housekeepers in the US is more than 12 years, why there are more than 20,000 Hyatt associates throughout the U.S. who have been with the company for more than 10 years, and why Hyatt is consistently distinguished as a great place to work in independent surveys of our associates, including our housekeepers."
"The UniteHere campaign is not about creating a better workplace at our hotels, but is an attempt to boost union membership at non-union Hyatt hotels through a non-democratic and intimidating process. To maintain the campaign, UniteHere leaders have refused to allow their members in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Waikiki vote on proposals containing the same wage and benefits packages the union accepted at Hilton and Starwood. As a result, our associates in these cities have gone without the pay raises and benefits increases they deserve for nearly three years."
"While continuing to deny our associates the pay raises and benefits increases they deserve,
UniteHere leaders' new call for a boycott of Hyatt will have a direct and negative impact on our associates, who depend on business at our hotels for their livelihoods. If successful, the boycott will hurt our associates, contradicting the union's stated objective of supporting our associates by improving their workplace environment and compensation. While UniteHere leadership is pursuing a strategy that puts its interests ahead of our associates, Hyatt is placing its associates first by standing ready to pay the raises our associates should have gotten, which will be delivered upon completion of new contracts."
"Hyatt is committed to paying our associates market-leading wages and benefits and their right to vote. In fact, in a full page ad in yesterday's Washington Post, we set the record straight and urged UniteHere leaders do the right thing for their members by allowing them to vote on a new contract that gives them the wage and benefits increases they deserve."
More information about Hyatt's Washington Post ad is available here: http://hyattpressroom.com/hyatt/en/news_releases0/2012/Hyatt-Sets-Record-Straight-On-UniteHere-Campaign.html
Said Mark Watson of UK-based global campaign organization Tourism Concern: "The outsourcing of hotel jobs was raised as a serious concern at our recent human rights roundtable. Hotels are increasingly looking to cut costs by outsourcing housekeeping and other roles to agencies at the expense of workers. Everyone has the right to a living wage, proper benefits and supported career development.
The outsourcing of hotel jobs, leading to lower wages, longer hours and fewer benefits is unethical and unnecessary. Furthermore we believe that hotels need to be accountable for the housekeepers and other employees who are near guests and their belongings - it makes sense that hotels that treat their staff decently will also offer a better guest experience.
As of March 31, 2012, the Hyatt's worldwide portfolio consisted of 488 properties in 45 countries
Says Hyatt: "Thousands of members of the Hyatt family strive to make a difference in the lives of the guests they encounter every day by providing authentic hospitality. The Company's subsidiaries manage, franchise, own and develop hotels and resorts under the Hyatt®, Park Hyatt®, Andaz®, Grand Hyatt®, Hyatt Regency®, Hyatt Place® and HYATT houseTM brand names and have locations on six continents.
Hyatt's global corporate responsibility platform, Hyatt Thrive
, is designed to "help make our communities places where our associates are proud to work, our guests want to visit, our neighbors want to live and owners want to invest."
Hyatt Thrive focuses on Environmental Sustainability, Economic Development & Investment, Education & Personal Advancement, Health & Wellness
Says Hyatt: "We achieve our goals through two programs, Hyatt Earth and Hyatt Community, that engage our associates around the world in these four areas. Hyatt Earth drives environmental stewardship across our hotels, while Hyatt Community strengthens our community impact through volunteerism, philanthropy and disaster relief."
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Tuesday, July 24, 2012