Thursday, February 18, 2010

Thursday Miscellany - Boycott the Sheraton & Call Sen. Begich

I. The Anchorage Sheraton illegally fired four workers Wednesday. Here's Mel Green on this otherwise unreported story:

That the Sheraton Anchorage, which has been under boycott by its workers since last November, today fired four of its workers for engaging in protected union activity.

On February 2, the four workers had been leafleting hotel guests and coworkers about the boycott, activities which are protected per at least two prior National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decisions:

  • Employees have the right to be in nonwork areas of their workplace to communicate with the employer’s customers about a labor dispute, using leaflets or picketing. Scott Hudgens, 230 NLRB 414 (1977).
  • Nonwork areas include the doors leading into the employer’s business. Santa Fe Hotel & Casino, 331 NLRB 723 (2000).

Sheraton management continuously interrupted the (off duty) workers as they leafleted prospective guests asking them to honor the worker’s call for a boycott of the hotel. Management took pictures, threatened to have security remove them, and eventually called the police — even though the worker’s activity was legal and protected. The following morning, the hotel’s general manager and human resources director suspended the four and escorted off them the property. Now, two weeks later, the workers have been fired.

I've just gotten word that the workers and their union will be holding a press conference Friday. Here's a press release from Jessica Lawson, the workers' union rep:

The four Sheraton workers who were suspended on Feb 3rd for participating in union activity, were fired yesterday. While we've taken appropriate legal action, we believe that a message from community members and the labor movement is going to be critical in getting their jobs back. So, we are planning on holding a Press Conference tomorrow (Friday, February 19th) at 12pm outside the National Labor Relations Board (4th & F st). We would appreciate anyone who is able to come to the conference and back up our terminated workers who will be speaking. More details to come . . .

II. There's a growing movement today in the U.S. Senate to change the Senate version of the health care reform bill to one that includes a viable public option. Seventeen or eighteen senators have agreed to dealing with this through the "reconciliation" process (ie - 51 votes). Alaska Sen. Mark Begich is not one of them.

Call Mark's office:


Peterson Tower, Suite 750
510 L St
Anchorage, AK, 99501
phone. (907) 271 - 5915
toll free. (877) 501 - 6275*
fax. (907) 258 - 9305


101 12th Ave, Room 206
Fairbanks, AK 99701
phone. (907) 456-0261
toll free. (877) 501 - 6275*
fax. (907) 451-7290


One Sealaska Plaza, Suite 308 Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 21850
Juneau, AK 99802

phone. (907) 586 - 7700
toll free. (877) 501 - 6275*
fax. (907) 586 - 7702


Anonymous said...

I actually kinda like the Sheraton. I ate dinner there last week. I plan on going again this week.

Now that you post this..I think I'll invite some friends.

KaJo said...

Hopefully the hotel’s general manager and human resources director will be your waitpersons...

crystalwolf aka caligrl said...

I agree with!
The cons and religious right hate unions! That means they would have to pay and fair wage and couldn't arbitrarily fire people at will!
When we had stronger unions we actually hat a middle class! Instead of rich & poor & poorer as we have now!
Support the unions...Boycott Sheraton Anchorage!

AKPetMom said...

With so many fine restaurants in Anchorage I have to ask who really goes to the Sheraton unless stuck there at a conference eating congealed buffets. It's a cheap place to put guests up in the summer, and a conference venue, but given a choice, there are better places to spend time in Anchorage.

I do, however, hope that the workers prevail in solving their dispute and regaining their employment.

Anonymous said...

Kenai Office

805 Frontage Rd. Suite 101
Kenai, AK, 99611
phone. (907) 283 - 4000
toll free. (877) 501 - 6275*
fax. (907) 283 - 4401

Philip Munger said...

thanks, anon @ 9:57!