Hotel workers in Los Angeles walked off the job Monday for the second time in two weeks, in what their union called a second wave of strikes for thousands of housekeepers, cooks, dishwashers and more — and as the hotels accused the union of being stubborn.
This week’s strike follows a three-day strike last week by workers at almost 20 hotels in the area, after union contracts affecting 15,000 workers at more than 60 hotels expired at the end of June. Among other things, the workers — whose hourly wages average $20 to $25 an hour — are seeking immediate pay increases of $5 an hour to start. The hotels are offering about half of that.
The first wave of workers picketed during the Fourth of July holiday in the downtown Los Angeles and Santa Monica areas but returned to work July 5, during what Unite Here Local 11 called a pause in the strike.
Now the union says thousands of other Los Angeles hotel workers are striking this week. Workers for at least eight hotels have joined the strike, this time at locations near the Los Angeles International Airport, including at brands like Hilton
; Holiday Inn, which is owned by InterContinental Hotels Group
; and more, according to the union’s update Monday on Twitter.
Only one hotel, the Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites in downtown Los Angeles, has reached a tentative agreement with the union.
The union also is seeking to establish a hospitality workforce housing fund, and pushing for safer workloads.
A representative for the hotels said Monday that the union has yet to respond to the bargaining group’s request for meetings on July 14 and July 18.
“UNITE HERE Local 11’s intransigence and unwillingness to meet is hurting our employees and continues to damage Los Angeles’ reputation with tourists,” Keith Grossman, a lawyer and spokesman for the group that represents 44 of the hotels, said in a statement Monday. “We offered dates because we want to meet and make progress toward a contract settlement.”
Union spokeswoman Maria Hernandez said Monday: “We’re consulting with the organizing committee to see what they want to do.”
From the archives (May 2023): Hotel housekeeping jobs have fallen by 102,000 during the pandemic. What happened?