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Support Seattle Hyatt workers’ right to form a union

Hyatt-boycott-frontSEATTLE — Hotel employees at the Grand Hyatt Seattle and Hyatt at Olive 8 called for a boycott nearly a full year ago, after years of struggling for dignity and respect on the job. All are invited to join with these workers and their community supporters for a Solidarity Rally at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 25 at the Grand Hyatt hotel, 721 Pine St. in Seattle.

Hotel housekeeping work is difficult work that can lead to debilitating pain and injuries from years lifting heavy mattresses and scrubbing floors. At the Hyatt at Olive 8, women often clean on their hands and knees and lug supplies from room to room without even the simple aid of a housekeeper cart. Instead, they must use a small suitcase to haul supplies and run around to restock linens, which requires rushing and strain that can cause injuries.

The Hyatt employees in Seattle report difficulty in affording health insurance, which can cost as much as $400 a month for a family of four. They also say more work is being done by subcontracted workers, who are typically paid less with even fewer benefits.

In response, workers have called for a fair process to form a union. In July 2013, UNITE HERE and Hyatt Hotels at the corporate level reached a national agreement on such a process, which has gone forward at other Hyatts in the United States. But so far, Richard Hedreen, the local owner of the Grand Hyatt Seattle and Hyatt at Olive 8, has refused to implement the agreed elections process in Seattle.

To date, Hyatt workers in Long Beach, Calif.; Emeryville near San Francisco; Greenwich, Conn.; and Baltimore, Md. have all used the fair elections process and joined UNITE HERE, while workers in Seattle are still waiting for local ownership to let them choose whether or not to join a union, free from management intimidation.

For more information, visit UNITE HERE Local 8’s website.

CHECK OUT THE UNION DIFFERENCE in Washington: higher wages, affordable health and dental care, job and retirement security.

FIND OUT HOW TO JOIN TOGETHER with your co-workers to negotiate for better wages, benefits, and a voice at work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!