EFFAT joins this week’s Global Week of Action for Hotel Workers on 25-31 October 2021 under the slogan: Come Back Stronger/Regresar Más Fuertes
With COVID-19 still raging, trade unions around the world are coming together this week to raise awareness of how hotel workers’ jobs have been affected by the pandemic.
As the hospitality industry is faced with a mass staff shortage, big hotel chains around the globe are increasingly using the pandemic as an opportunity to cut the services, instead of working with trade unions to create decent jobs and sustainable tourism.
While hotel guests expect / pay for full service and appreciate daily housekeeping, Hilton, for example, is pushing to end this standard abolishing ‘automatically clean rooms’ , putting working lives dignity ‘on demand’.
Such practices exacerbate the hardships of thousands of housekeepers working conditions as their workload is even more painful as rooms get dirtier by the day. Only in the U.S., about 40 per cent of hotel-housekeeping jobs — almost 200,000 workers — are in danger of being permanently eliminated, according to Unite Here. This would disproportionately affect ethnic minorities, as 73 per cent of U.S. hotel housekeepers are Hispanic or Latino, Black, Asian American, or Native American.
This issue where the hotel industry is using COVID-19 as an excuse to make long-term service cuts does not only occur in the U.S. It is a reality in Europe too. That’s why EFFAT joins the campaign this week.
Even now, in Europe, the hotel industry heavily relies on zero-hour contracts, on-call work, and subcontracting based on invoices by the number of rooms cleaned rather than the number of hours workers are employed.
From housekeeping to food and beverage service, workers are fighting every day to save the jobs they rely on to provide for their families and to demand a just pandemic recovery.
It is not enough to simply “come back”. Hotel workers must Come Back Stronger, stronger than ever.