July 26, 2006

In San Francisco, UNITE HERE Local 2 did not agree to a contract proposal offered last week by the San Francisco Multi-Employer Group, which represents the 13 hotels still at odds with the union. The proposal would have raised wages for employees, but it also would have made new employees ineligible to receive the level of health care currently provided to workers for a period of five years. A Local 2 spokesperson said some progress had been made at the recent negotiations, which will resume on July 31, but the parties were still far apart on some issues, such as subcontracting work to outside groups. Operating without a contract for nearly two years, the union has scheduled a protest march for tomorrow afternoon that will start in Union Square and pass a number of downtown hotels.

Negotiations began yesterday in Chicago for contracts covering 7,000 union workers at 26 downtown and airport hotels, according to UNITE HERE Local 1, the union representing the hotel workers. The current contract is set to expire in Chicago on Aug. 31.