In 2007, downtown hotel workers signed a historic agreement with the Westin Hotel.
As the Seattle area hotel sector recovers from the recession to strong growth and profitability, the industry’s underside stands in stark contrast to the record-breaking financial success of the six major international hotel chains. The hotel workforce continues to endure poverty wages as well as work-related injuries resulting from the industry’s management practices. Instead of sharing in the industry's record profits, many hotel workers – largely immigrant and women of color –are forced to work multiple jobs in addition to their current hotel jobs just to get by.
Sage is a proud supporter of Hotel Workers Rising, a national campaign by the members of the hotel workers’ union, UniteHere Local 8, to improve their jobs and secure better lives for themselves and their families.
In Seattle, UniteHere Local 8 kicked off Hotel Workers Rising back in 2006 with a labor-community campaign to improve wages and working conditions at the Westin Hotel in downtown Seattle. Sage helped build community support for the hotel workers through rallies, community/worker picket lines, and even civil disobedience to draw attention to the workers’ plight.
In 2007, the hotel workers signed an historic agreement with the Westin Hotel. The highlights of the agreement include:
- Complete health care coverage
- No subcontracting of union jobs
- Significant wage increases – up to $14/hour
- 50% increase in pension contributions
- Reduction in workload to achieve worker safety
- Protections for immigrant workers from harassment