Sunday, July 25, 2010


Last Thursday hotel workers in Vancouver BC protested in front of the Hyatt Regency Hotel as part of a 15 city continental protest against the chain's anti-worker policies. In a real direct action as opposed to a theatrical riot the workers blocked access to the hotel during the protest. These workers are represented by Unite Here. Here's a report from the BC newspaper 'The Province'.
Hundreds block downtown Vancouver corridor to protest Hyatt's treatment of workers
More than 600 hotel workers protested outside the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Vancouver during the evening rush hour Thursday as part of demonstrations in 15 North American cities against the way the global hotel giant treats its workers.

“We want to focus on the Hyatt because we feel like it serves as the starkest example of a global hotel company that managed to do well during the recession while they were cutting hours for workers, reducing shifts, leading to increased work loads for workers who are on staff,” said Michelle Travis of Unite Here Local 40, which represents about 8,000 hotel workers in B.C.

Protesting their treatment by the corporate hotel giant, workers blocked Burrard Street between West Georgia and Dunsmuir at the height of the demonstration as police redirected traffic.

Similar protests by thousands of hotel workers were held in Toronto and major U.S. cities such as New York, Chicago and San Francisco.

Unite Here, formerly known as the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Union, is in contract negotiations for a new contract for about 1,600 hotel workers in Vancouver at the Hyatt, Four Seasons, Westin Bayshore and Renaissance hotels.

Understaffing and workloads have emerged as the main issues in bargaining for a new contract that expired on June 30.

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