- Union workers at BEI Hotel San Francisco, part of Wyndham’s Trademark Collection, voted overwhelmingly (96%) to authorize a strike on Tuesday, according to hospitality union Unite Here.
- Workers say they have suffered diarrhea, stomach pain and other food poisoning symptoms ever since May of this year, when the hotel laid off cooks and outsourced cafeteria meals.
- The union says a strike could be called at any time. If so, BEI Hotel workers, represented by Unite Here Local 2, would join other Unite Here locals in active strikes across the country.
Workers at BEI Hotel say they have already tried to address the outsourced cafeteria food through meetings, negotiations and petitions.
Now, Unite Here Local 2 has filed unfair labor practices charges with the National Labor Relations Board. The charges claim BEI Hotel’s “unilateral” firing of union cafeteria cooks constituted a violation of labor law.
“San Francisco’s tourism industry can’t recover without housekeepers, dishwashers, cooks, and servers who do difficult and painful jobs, but the BEI Hotel can’t even be bothered to give them cafeteria food that’s safe to eat,” said Anand Singh, president of Unite Here Local 2, in a statement.
It’s not the first issue to arise between BEI and the hospitality union. Unite Here said it has been in “protracted” negotiations with the hotel over other issues, such as wages. Workers at BEI have not received raises in six years, and the hotel refused contract agreements in 2018 and 2022.
BEI Hotel is owned by Chinese state-owned enterprise Beijing Tourism Group, which operates another BEI property in China. The 400-room hotel employs 70 workers, according to Unite Here.
Beijing Tourism Group could not be reached for comment. BEI Hotel San Francisco and Wyndham Hotels & Resorts did not respond to a Hotel Dive request for comment by press time.
Other Unite Here locals are holding — or threatening to hold — strikes as well.
Last month, thousands of casino workers in Detroit, many represented by the hospitality union, walked out over wages they say don’t keep up with the rising cost of living. And Unite Here workers in Southern California — still in the midst of rolling walkouts that began in July — are striking over similar issues.
Workers in the Unite Here-affiliated Culinary and Bartenders Unions in Las Vegas have also authorized a strike, which will turn into a reality if an agreement is not reached with resort employers by Nov. 11.