PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Housekeepers, bartenders, food service staff, cooks, laundry attendants, dishwashers and hunters have all left their jobs to picket outside the Wyndham Historic Hotel District in the old town. Staff cite many concerns, from low wages to staffing.
“It’s a fight,” said housekeeper Renee Holmes, adding: “We are on strike because we are not paid and overworked.
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Unite Philly Local 274, the union representing workers at Wyndham, said employees here had not seen a raise since July 2019, while seeing their workload increase due to staff shortages and cleaning policies Additional COVIDs.
“Hospitality workers have been taken for granted for a very long time, but especially during the pandemic,” said Katherine Cristiani, executive vice president of Unite Here.
“We are making 25 beds and the toll it takes on your body is very hard,” Holmes told CBS3. “My legs are swollen, my ankles, my feet, my hands
Unite Philly said that although the hospitality industry is the city’s fastest growing industry, 73% of its employees earn less than half the annual cost of living for an adult and a child. It is a test often linked to the race.
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“The vast majority of workers in the Wyndham Historic District are people of color, and often times I think their jobs are even more neglected,” Cristiani said.
In a statement, a spokesperson for Wyndham said:
“Although we respect the workers’ right to strike, we are disappointed that Unite here has chosen this path. The hotel is open and operational, and we have taken steps to ensure that guests are not affected. “
At that, the workers said it was time for their voices to be heard.
“We want fairness,” Holmes said.
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The strike officially ends at 7:30 a.m. Monday. So far, union leaders have told CBS3 they have not been contacted by Wyndham. If necessary, the union said it would strike again.