Pinoy workers among arrested at SF hotel protest

SAN FRANCISCO – Since seven in the morning these protesters, consisting of hotel workers and union supporters, have been picketing outside of the Le Meridien Hotel and the Hyatt Fisherman’s Wharf.

The reason: they say the hotel owners allegedly rejected their calls to unionize.

Filipino Americans workers were among those who were clamoring for hotel owner, Chesapeake Lodging Trust, to give them the opportunity to vote on unionizing.

According to the union, 89 percent of San Francisco hotels are unionized and while pay is equal to union scales, the difference lies in health care coverage.

“I think basically it’s cheaper,” said Tho Do, a UniteHere Local 2 spokesperson. “It’s the cost because they want to be able to have total control over the worker and the working condition and health benefits.”

Guests checking in were confronted by protesters encouraging them to not stay in the hotel citing what they allege is the “mistreatment” of their workers.

The climax of the protest came when several protesters blocked the doors of the hotel.

A total of 22 protesters that included Filipinos were arrested on suspicion of interfering with a business establishment.

Chesapeake Lodging Trust officials were not immediately available for comment

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