Sixty Seven years ago today on the 9th of October 1946 the biggest strike in the history of the London Hotel Sector commenced when when waiting staff, chambermaids, chefs, kitchen porters and cellarmen at the Savoy walked out in protest at their working conditions and picketed the 14 entrances to the hotel. Food delivery workers refused to cross the picket line and wealty American guest staying in the Savoy donated £500 to the strike fund.
An open letter to the Chief Executive Officers of Intercontinental Hotels and Radisson Edwardian Hotels accompanied our noisy protests at the May Fair Hotel and the Holiday Inn Mayfair. Our letter calls on both companies to honour their international commitment to promote freedom of assocaiation and collective bargaining by entering into a City Wide Agreement with Unite for mimumim standards on worker's rights in the hotels they operate in London. Watch this space for news of their response.
The International Union of Foodworkers (IUF) is launching a global campaign for dignity and decency for workers employed in hotel housekeeping departments. The IUF which has 390 affiliated unions in 122 countries (including Unite the Union) is calling on the International Labour Organisation and the UN World Tourism Organisation to respond to the degredation of housekeeping staff with policies that can bring about a change to the industy and give staff the rights they need for their unions to negotiate effectively with their staff.
Unite has prepared its annual submission to the Low Pay Commission. We are calling for an increase in the National Minimum Wage to take into account the rise in the cost of living for low paid workers. We are also calling for the abolition of piece-rate for workers in hotel housekeeping departments to prevent employers paying by the room instead of the hour and for a clamp down on bogus self employment by rogue agencies.
Details coming soon.
The Hotel Workers Branch has called a demonstration to coincide with United Nations World Tourism Day on September 27, 2013. We're asking members to meet at Green Park Tube Station from 16:00 (4 PM) onwards. We will be demonstrating outside two hotels who are signatories to the UN Global Compact and highlighting the fact that they do not honour the principles.
For further information contact Dave.Turnbull@unitetheunion.org