By Robyn Takayama. Posted October 18, 2018.
Intro: The hotel and restaurant workers union UNITE HERE took 7,800 of its members out on strike at 24 Marriott hotels in Boston, Detroit, Honolulu, Lahaina, Maui, Oakland, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose on October 8, 2018. For months, the union has negotiated with the Marriott Hotels, the world’s largest chain, as contracts were due to expire. The workers demands for a living wage, job protection and workplace safety were not satisfactorily addressed by the Marriott Hotels even though the are financially able to provide a decent wage. The Marriott Hotels revenue in 2017 was $22.9 billion. Their profits have gone up 279% during the past recession years while workers’ wages only increased by 7%.
The following audio story is by Robynn Takayama from the picket line at the St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco. The workers make an eloquent appeal for the general public to honor their picket lines and avoid the Marriott Hotel.
Robynn Takayama is a veteran audio producer based in San Francisco.