L.A. lodges hit by strike say union’s housing agenda overreaches

L.A. hotels hit by strike say union's housing agenda overreaches

Amid tense negotiations over new contracts for 1000’s of native lodge housekeepers, receptionists and cooks, a bunch of Southern California lodges filed an unfair labor follow cost accusing Unite Right here Native 11 of putting over coverage proposals which have “nothing to do” with the workers it represents.

The group has taken concern particularly with the union’s calls for that lodges help housing initiatives, each politically and materially. In negotiations, the union has requested lodges to publicly endorse a measure set for the 2024 poll that will require lodges in Los Angeles to hire vacant rooms to unhoused individuals. The union has additionally urged lodges to comply with impose a 7% payment on all visitor room gross sales to create a brand new fund that will help hospitality employees in acquiring inexpensive housing.

Keith Grossman, an lawyer with Hirschfeld Kraemer, one in every of two companies representing the lodge coalition, stated in an emailed assertion Thursday that pushing for such provisions to be included in a contract settlement and putting over them is “not solely illegal, however it is usually an actual impediment to reaching settlement on a contract.”

“If the union actually needed an settlement to assist the workers, it will have dropped these points way back as an alternative of taking staff out on strike over them,” Grossman stated.

The lodge bargaining group, which represents 44 lodges in Los Angeles and Orange counties, filed the unfair labor follow cost June 30 with the Nationwide Labor Relations Board. The union bargained in unhealthy religion by putting over “nonmandatory topics,” the group argued within the submitting.

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The accusations come as 1000’s of employees at greater than a dozen lodges concerned in negotiations returned to work Wednesday after three days on strike over wages and advantages, which coincided with the July Fourth vacation weekend.

Union officers dismissed the accusations.

Unite Right here Native 11 co-President Kurt Petersen stated the union’s proposals intention to assist Angelenos most affected by the housing disaster — together with lodge employees who’re regularly priced out or face eviction within the expensive areas round the place they work.

Coming off a busy weekend the place downtown L.A. lodges may cost $600 or extra per night time, the lodge group’s declare “rings actually hole,” Petersen stated.

“I’m unsure what they’re arguing, as a result of we’re allowed to cut price over something we wish on the desk,” he stated. “They need to cease paying their legal professionals … to file frivolous complaints and as an alternative pay their employees a dwelling wage.”

Unite Right here Native 11 gathered sufficient signatures for what is named the Los Angeles Accountable Lodge Ordinance to position it earlier than voters on the March 2024 poll. Lodge homeowners and operators have vigorously opposed the measure, whose provisions embrace requiring lodges to report vacant rooms they must town, which might pay for and distribute vouchers to homeless Angelenos to be housed in these rooms.

The proposal would additionally hyperlink the event of some new lodges to inexpensive housing building.

Lodge companies and business teams such because the Lodge Assn. of Los Angeles has argued the ordinance would place undue burden on homeowners and operators and their staff, and doesn’t present readability on how social companies can be provided to voucher recipients or on legal responsibility points.

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Unite Right here Native 11 and roughly 60 Southern California lodges the place contracts expired June 30 at midnight have been in talks to hash out an settlement.

The 7% payment known as for by the union would create a Hospitality Workforce Housing Help Belief Fund, to be collectively administered by labor and administration representatives. Its goal can be to offer momentary “bridge” housing and emergency loans to needy hospitality employees, in addition to fund inexpensive housing improvement tasks.

The union outlined its calls for concerning the payment in a April 20 proposal reviewed by the Instances. The union estimates the payment may generate $150 million yearly.

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