For immediate release
August 14, 2007
Union Alleges Hotel Management Used Offering Incentives, Threats and Interrogation to Discourage Worker Organizing Efforts
PASADENA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Hotel workers, including housekeepers, dishwashers, cooks, servers and front desk staff, at the prestigious Ritz Carlton Huntington Hotel in Pasadena have been organizing for an agreement to allow them to choose whether to have union representation, without interference or opposition from management, with UNITE HERE Local 11. The hotel is managed by Marriott International and owned by the Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association (LACERA).
UNITE HERE Local 11 alleges that in response to worker organizing efforts, the hotel is conducting an anti-union campaign that includes interrogation of employees, threats of retaliation, and the offering of incentives to prevent employees from engaging in union activity in an attempt to intimidate workers and cause them to abandon their union organizing efforts. Today, the Union filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in response to these tactics, and will hold an informational picket line at the non-union hotel at 10AM.
"Ritz management runs the hotel by using fear and intimidation. My co-workers and I are organizing to try to change this," states John Amaro, a cook at the Ritz Carlton Huntington Hotel. Last week several African American and Latino workers went public with allegations of racial discrimination in the promotion and transfer processes at the hotel. At the press conference to announce the filing of a racial discrimination complaint against the hotel, workers spoke of threats made by management of the hotel to discourage them from organizing. “I was repeatedly asked about my union activity by management and was told that it could cost me my job,” said Elvia Alonzo, a housekeeper at the hotel.
The charges filed with the NLRB allege that the hotel interfered with, restrained and coerced employees in the exercise of their rights to organize a union under the National Labor Relations Act.
UNITE HERE Local 11 represents over 10,000 hotel, food service, laundry, airport and stadium workers in the Los Angeles area. Local 11 has been assisting the Ritz Carlton Huntington Hotel’s non-managerial employees to organize for over a year. For more information, see www.RitzHuntingtonWatch.info.