For immediate release
October 9, 2006
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Honolulu- After more than four months of negotiations, UNITE HERE! Local 5 and the Hilton Hawaiian Village announced this morning that they have reached a tentative agreement on a new contract for the more than 1,500 union members employed at the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
“On Saturday, the negotiating committee voted to recommend ratification by the membership,” said Eric Gill, UNITE HERE! Local 5 Financial Secretary-Treasurer. “We are very proud of this new agreement, and believe it will help bring Hawaii’s hotel workers into the middle class,” he added.
Lois Tanaka, a single mom who works as a waitress at the Hilton Hawaiian Village said, “this agreement means a lot to me. It’s about taking care of the employees. It’s about doing what’s right, and it’s about recognizing that we are an important part of the Hilton’s success.”
Dolores Reyes, a housekeeper at the Hilton Hawaiian Village said, “as a housekeeper I am proud of the hard work I do everyday to support tourism in Hawaii. I am proud of my union and I am proud of this agreement.”
With this new agreement with the Hilton in-hand, the struggle now turns towards securing fair contracts for an additional 5,000 hotel workers in Waikiki.
Wai Man Chan, a housekeeper employed at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki since 1992 said, “this is a great agreement, and we call on the other Laulima Council Members (Hyatt and Marriott) to do the right thing and sign a fair contract. Hyatt and Marriott workers deserve the same wages and benefits as Hilton workers. We have always been one city with one union and one contract.”
“We’ve said all along that our goal this year was to secure good middle class hotel jobs for a Hawaii our children can afford to live in, and this agreement sets a new standard that will help us achieve this goal not only at the Hilton but at the Sheratons and every other major hotel in Waikiki,” said Rod Kane, a cook at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani Hotel.
Talks between UNITE HERE! Local 5 and the four Sheraton hotels in Waikiki resume on Tuesday, October 10th.