UPDATED: Carmel Hotel Workers File Complaint Against Pine Inn
November 22, 2011
Carmel hospitality workers have plenty of reasons to be feeling thankless this Thanksgiving. Workers gathered Tuesday afternoon at Pine Inn, protesting on behalf of 28 employees who have been without a contract for nearly a year.
Workers are demanding continued health care benefits for spouses and children, which have been a sticking point in negotiations for Unite Here Local 483.
After months of protests and stalled negotiations, the union Sunday lodged a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, alleging Pine Inn and neighboring Tally-Ho Inn management violated organizing rules, and that hotel managers "coerced and interfered" with workers' activities. The complaint alleges management conducted illegal surveillance of protected organizing.
Pine Inn General Manager John Lloyd said in a statement that Pine Inn/Tally Ho Inn are the only union hotels in Carmel-by-the-Sea, making them noncompetitive. "Despite its relatively small size and downtown Carmel location, the union is trying to force the Pine Inn/Tally Ho Inn to agree to the same benefits and conditions of employment as large union hotels located outside of Carmel such as Hyatt, Hilton, Monterey Beach and Pebble Beach properties," Lloyd said.
“This is the 1 percent enriching themselves on the backs of the 99 percent," said Local 483 Vice President Hector Azpilcueta in a statement. "The Pine Inn owner wants to make more money than he already is making, so he takes it from his workers’ children’s insurance."
The Pine Inn complaint comes less than a month after workers lost a major battle with La Playa hotel management regarding a contract guarantee that workers could keep their jobs under new management. Sixteen activists were arrested in Carmel last month in an act of civil disobedience, but new owners Classic Hotels & Resorts (a subsidiary of Phoenix-based Grossman Company Properties) have made no commitment to rehiring laid-off workers after renovations are complete.