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Hyatt Hotel Workers Walk Out In West Hollywood Over Union Contract

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(Photo credit: MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo credit: MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

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WEST HOLLYWOOD (CBS) — Employees at a Hyatt hotel in West Hollywood took part in a week-long multi-city walkout Thursday to protest work conditions.

The strike by members of the Unite Here union affects the Andaz West Hollywood at 8401 W. Sunset Blvd. and Hyatt properties in Chicago, San Francisco and Honolulu, the union announced.

Workers are “fighting for the right to take a stand against an abusive employer that is destroying good jobs in their North American hotels. Hyatt has singled itself out as the worst employer in the hotel industry,” a union statement said.

The union accused Hyatt of replacing career housekeepers with minimum-wage temporary workers and imposed dangerous workloads on housekeepers who remain.

“Injury rates for Hyatt housekeepers are high, and academic studies have shown that housekeeping can lead to debilitating injuries,” it said.

“Housekeepers at some Hyatts clean as many as 30 rooms a day, nearly double what is typically required at union hotels.”

The union also complained that union members have been working without a contract in the Los Angeles area as well as Chicago, San Francisco and Honolulu.

The statement said Hyatt workers have called for boycotts at 17 Hyatt properties, causing Hyatt to lose more than $20 million in business.

Unite Here said this week’s strikes involve 3,000 unionized hotel workers at six Hyatt properties in North America, including two hotels in Chicago.

The union claims to represent an estimated 250,000 workers throughout the U.S. and Canada who work in the hospitality, gaming, food service, manufacturing, textile, laundry, and airport industries.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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