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Rally Against Prop H8: Manchester Grand Hyatt
Rally Agaist Hate!
On July 10th, 2008, a coalition led by the San Diego labor movement and the LGBT community called for a boycott of the Manchester Grand Hyatt, the host site for AERA's 2009 Conference.
Manchester's Hyatt has brought the LGBT community UNITE HERE together to fight for equality for gay and lesbian couples and justice for the workers at his Hyatt hotel. Doug Manchester has a history working against both:
· Equality for lesbian and gay couples. Doug Manchester is one of the leading funders ($125,000) of Proposition 8, a California ballot initiative that discriminates against LGBT couples. The California LGBT community faces an extremely difficult fight to prevent an outright ban on their civil right to have legal recognition for same sex couples and equal protection for their families. While Hyatt may officially disavow Manchester's contributions to Proposition 8 as a personal choice, the fact remains that their multi-million dollar LGBT marketing efforts must be seen as little more than sheer hypocrisy when the revenue this marketing attracts is then funneled into efforts that bite the hand which feeds them. In such a situation, we always have the ability to choose not to feed them any longer.
· Justice for Manchester Hyatt workers. Manchester's Hyatt allegedly forces housekeepers to clean more rooms than housekeepers at other Hyatt hotels, including the other Hyatt hotel in San Diego. In 2006, housekeepers began lunch hour protests against working conditions in the hotel, saying that their daily room quota had been increased from 17 to 30 rooms per shift! We have no reason to believe that Manchester has made any workload reductions to address these protests. Across the hotel industry, increasing workloads have put a greater strain on housekeepers; work speedups have led to increasing injury rates. According to the Department of Labor, injury rates for hotel workers are 40% higher than the service sector average. Hotel housekeeper injuries are debilitating. Back injuries, housemaids' knee (bursitis), and shoulder pain can lead to permanent disability. Numerous studies have shown that unreasonable workloads are a serious occupational health issue; here are a few facts that highlight the severity of that problem:
In a recent survey of more than 600 hotel housekeepers in the U.S. and Canada, 91% said that they have suffered work-related pain. Of those who reported workplace pain:
_ 77% said their workplace pain interfered with routine activities.
_ Two out of every three workers visited their doctor to deal with workplace pain.
_ 66% took pain medication just to get through their daily quota.
(UNITE HERE survey results)