UNITE HERE Local 75

UNITE HERE Local 75

November 03, 2016 14:16 ET

Media Advisory: Community Leaders in Vancouver & Toronto Call on Larco Hospitality to Stop Hurting Housekeepers

Canadian Cities Join Hotel Housekeepers Global Week of Action

TORONTO, ONTARIO and VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Nov. 3, 2016) -

What: Joint press conference to be held on Thursday, November 3rd, in Vancouver and Toronto, with community leaders representing several Filipino, South Asian and faith groups and UNITE HERE Canada. Together, we will demand that Larco Hospitality stop mistreating hotel workers, many of whom immigrant women, who report heavy workloads and experience work-related pain and who have experienced violations of basic rights in their efforts to organize.

This action is part of the Hotel Housekeeping Global Week of Action, featuring multiple coordinated actions by housekeepers in more than a dozen countries around the world.
Where: Renaissance Toronto Downtown Hotel, 1 Blue Jays Way, Toronto (located in the Rogers Centre)
When: Thursday, November 3, 2016 at 4:00PM
Who: Members of Migrante Canada, an international human rights organization for Filipino migrants, members of AnakBayan Toronto (AB-TO), an all-youth advocacy group organizing events around issues affecting the Filipino community in Canada, and hotel workers from the Renaissance Toronto Downtown Hotel who recently voted to join UNITE HERE Local 75 and are currently negotiating their first contract.
Why: Larco Investments, and its affiliate, Larco Hospitality, is a major hotel owner and operator in Canada. Many of Larco's hotel employees are first generation immigrants who are Filipino, South Asian and Chinese. During this week's Hotel Housekeepers Global Week of Action, community leaders in Vancouver and Toronto will be calling on Larco to stop mistreating workers at their hotels.

In Vancouver, workers at the Sheraton Vancouver Airport hotel, owned by an affiliate of Larco Hospitality, are being squeezed by heavy workloads and lower wage and benefit standards than at comparable hotels, earning, on average $8,000 less annually.

In Toronto, workers at the Renaissance Toronto Downtown Hotel report that Larco Hospitality interfered with their right to organize at the hotel through the use of intimidation and harassment tactics during a union drive this summer. In response, UNITE HERE Local 75 filed charges against Larco with the Ontario Labour Relations Board. The workers are currently negotiating their first contract.

Hotel workers, particularly housekeepers, are often immigrants, women, and people of colour, and are the invisible backbone of the hotel industry. The work they do can be grueling and dangerous. It entails lifting mattresses that can weigh up to 100 pounds, pushing heavy carts, and dealing with guests behind closed doors. Heavy and repetitive workloads combined with intense time pressures can contribute to chronic pain and injuries for housekeepers.

Housekeepers affiliated with UNITE HERE in Canada and the U.S. will join worldwide protests this week to spotlight safety concerns and poor wages faced by women who clean hotel rooms. The Hotel Housekeepers Global Week of Action is taking place between October 31 and November 6.
Visuals: Photo opportunity of workers and community leaders with signs, banners and other visuals.

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