UNITE HERE union workers in San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, San Jose, Honolulu and Maui are holding strike authorization votes on Marriott properties across the U.S. Voting took place in Honolulu and Maui on September 10 and in Boston on September 12. Hotel workers in San Francisco and San Jose held votes on September 13. Seattle held its vote on September 14. All six union groups voted to authorize a strike.
The votes will determine whether union workers can move forward with a strike in each city. This article will be updated with voting results as they are announced so be sure to check back in for updates!
Seattle Workers Vote to Authorize Strike
UNITE HERE Local 8 authorized a Seattle Marriott strike with a 98 percent yes strike vote. The workers represent approximately 400 union members at the Seattle Westin.
San Francisco, San Jose Hotel Workers Vote to Authorize Strike
UNITE HERE! union workers in San Francisco and San Jose voted to authorize a strike of the cities' Marriott properties on Thursday, September 13.
San Francisco UNITE HERE! Local 2 union members voted 98.6 percent to authorize a strike—a number many on hand at the city's Parc 55 Hotel voting site were proud of because it bested the Boston UNITE HERE! vote of 96 percent—and the San Jose UNITE HERE! Local 19 workers voted 90 percent to authorize a strike.
The yes vote authorizes the unions in both cities to go on strike at the properties at any time.
Meetings Today Chief Content Director Tyler Davidson was on the scene for the UNITE HERE! Local 2 strike vote in San Francisco. View his complete coverage (including video footage), here.
Boston Hotel Workers Vote 96% to Authorize Strike
More than 1,000 Boston union hotel workers employed by Marriott properties voted to authorize a strike, which can be initiated at any time. The UNITE HERE Local 26 vote was 96 percent in favor of the authorization.
The Boston union worker vote to strike occurred on September 12.
"Our members are voting to strike because Marriott is not taking our concerns seriously," said Local 26 President Brian Lang. "The needs of hotel workers & our families will not be put on hold while our work creates record profits for Marriott. We are fully prepared to do whatever it takes to achieve our goals.”
UNITE HERE Local 26 hotel workers voted to authorize a strike at eight Boston Marriott hotels—the W, Westin Copley, Westin Boston Waterfront, Renaissance, Ritz Carlton, Sheraton Boston, Aloft, and Element hotels.
In total, the properties utilize around 1,800 union-backed employees.
Hawaii Hotel Workers Vote 95% to Authorize Strike
UNITE HERE Local 5 workers from six Marriott-operated hotels in Honolulu and Maui voted to authorize a strike with a 95 percent yes vote on Monday, September 10.
According to UNITE HERE, the strike vote is the result of months of negotiations with Marriott for contracts covering 3,500 hotel workers from six Marriott-operated hotels: Waikiki Beach Marriott, Sheraton Waikiki, The Royal Hawaiian, Westin Moana Surfrider, Sheraton Princess Kaiulani and Sheraton Maui.
The union’s primary issues regard worker compensation, job security and sexual harassment policies.
“We want to come to an agreement with Marriott, but our members are preparing for a strike if contracts are not settled soon,” said Eric Gill, Secretary-Treasurer of UNITE HERE Local 5, in a prepared statement. “Our proposal is to make one job enough to live in Hawaii. Marriott’s proposal is to get another job.”
Marriott issued the following statement in response to the strike vote news:
“We have had multiple bargaining sessions with UNITE HERE, with additional sessions scheduled over the next several weeks. We have reached tentative agreements on a number of substantive issues through these negotiations. And, we continue to negotiate in good faith in an effort to resolve the remaining issues.
"Through decades of working with various UNITE HERE local unions, we have always taken the negotiation process seriously and have always reached fair agreements.
"We have no reason to believe that this negotiation process will be any different. We respect the right of our associates to voice their opinions on issues that are important to them. Should the union and our employees choose to strike, our hotels will continue to operate and work to minimize any disruption.”
UNITE HERE maintains MarriottTravelAlert.org to issue updates on the strike status at specific hotels.