COABE Conference to be held at Union Boycotted Hotel

This year, the attendees of the COABE Conference in San Francisco might have to cross a picket line to get to their workshops, plenaries, and networking sessions.

That’s because the Hilton San Francisco Union Square is currently under boycott by the UNITE/HERE hotel and restaurant workers union.

Photo courtesy of UNITE HERE Local 2

Despite Hilton’s parent company, Blackstone Group, having recently received many millions of taxpayer dollars in Federal bailout money, Hilton is demanding benefit and pension cuts from its workers, a 40% workload increase, and no raises. Yet Blackstone saw an increase in net income of 23% last quarter. Workers, who are the San Francisco counterparts of our ABE and ESOL students, are currently working without a contract. By any measure, this is not fair or just.

Although they have taken a position in solidarity with the workers, COABE organizers have declined to find a new venue for the April 2011 conference because of a penalty in their contract with the Hilton.

What you can do:

  • Send a letter to the Hilton in San Francisco demanding that they settle the strike with the union by agreeing to a contract that is fair to the workers there.
  • Make sure that when your organization negotiates a contract with a facility, it allows you to get out of the contract in the event of a labor action.

If many of us send letters, it increases the likelihood that these hotel workers will receive some measure of justice, and the wages, benefits and working conditions they deserve.

For a sample letter to the Hilton San Francisco Union Square, click here.

  • Email your letters to: Scott.Baublitz@Hilton.com

Visit Local 2 of UNITE/HERE.

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