Hotel Workers Vote to Stay With UNITE HERE Local 75; Take Unifor to Task for Bullying and Intimidation Tactics
Toronto, Ontario – Hotel workers at 17 hotels around the GTA have decided to remain with UNITE HERE Local 75 on the heels of raiding efforts by Unifor, including the Toronto Don Valley Hotel & Suites and the Hilton Toronto who both voted overwhelmingly in favour of UNITE HERE today. Hundreds of hotel workers have also filed with the Ontario Labour Relations Board to have their signatures revoked from Unifor petitions as a result of feeling bullied and misled in the raiding efforts. Read more>>>
We are former members of the UNITE HERE Local 75 Executive Board, elected by the members of the union we built. A majority of us are immigrants and people of colour. Each of us has our own story to tell about how our past president, who is now leading Unifor’s attack on Local 75, dismissed, disrespected, and forced us out. She disregarded the democratic procedures of our union, removing Executive Board members undemocratically and unilaterally appointing hand-picked replacements. We were paralyzed by division.
This conflict had such a debilitating effect on our local that last spring we voted overwhelmingly to appeal to our International Union to intervene with a trusteeship. With the trusteeship in place, we are ready to move forward and return our full focus to fighting for the best possible standard for hotel workers in Toronto.
We are staying with the strongest hotel workers union in the world because we have sacrificed too much to allow our union to move backwards.
You can find detailed background information at the links below:
- Summary Report of UNITE HERE Local 75 Trusteeship and Raid (January 30, 2018)
- UNITE HERE Local 75 Letter (January 20, 2018)
- UNITE HERE President Taylor Letter and Attachments (January 18, 2018)
- Trustee Robb Membership Letter (January 16, 2018)
- Final Notice of Charges (January 4, 2018)
- UNITE HERE Factum (January 4, 2018)
- UNITE HERE President Taylor Affidavit and Exhibits (December 30, 2017)
We are writing to share some upsetting news.
On Wednesday, January 17, 2018 Unifor launched a campaign to raid our union UNITE HERE Local 75.
In a time when working people have so much to fight for, we are saddened that Unifor has chosen to put its energy into picking a fight among ourselves. Unifor’s actions are in clear violation of the Constitution of the Canadian Labour Congress and the spirit of the labour movement.
This attack comes in a difficult moment for our union.
For generations, UNITE HERE Local 75 has been a union of immigrant workers who have come to Toronto from every corner of the globe and chosen to fight together for a better life for all of our families.
Over the past year, our Local has been severely harmed by officers and staff who refused to accept the leadership of duly-elected members, most of whom are immigrants. Their repeated actions to dismiss, disrespect, and force out these leaders violated our fundamental values and hurt our members. Now those same officers and staff have resigned from UNITE HERE Local 75, joined Unifor, and launched a campaign to raid our union.
UNITE HERE is the strongest hotel workers union in the world, with over 100,000 members in hotels and the best contracts in the industry. Everywhere that immigrants lead our local unions, we win great contracts.
While we are saddened by Unifor’s attempt to divide the labour movement, we will not permit them to move us backwards. In 2018, immigrants will lead UNITE HERE Local 75 in winning a new standard for all hotel workers in Toronto.
We are grateful for your support, and will keep you updated.
Ian Robb, Canadian Director and Trustee
Former Executive Board Members of UNITE HERE Local 75
Nuredin Bulle, UNITE HERE Local 75
Valrie Lue, UNITE HERE Local 75
Habtom Ogbamichael, Sheraton Centre
Lloyd Manning, Radisson Suite Hotel Toronto Airport
Ianka Stoyanova, Holiday Inn on Bloor
Sami Hana, Old Mill
Christine Smalling, Hilton Toronto Airport
Colin Frances, Upper Canada College, Food Service
Yohannes Habte, Holiday Inn Toronto Downtown Centre
Josh Cuasay, One King West
Rik Hockley, Novotel Toronto Centre
Kayann Drummond, Sheraton Centre
Maria Richards, Delta Hotels by Marriott Toronto East
Nigel Blair, York University, Food Service
Abdalla Idris, Chelsea Hotel Toronto
Avanell Johnson, Fairmont Royal York
Froilan De Guzman, Sandman Signature Toronto Airport Hotel
Medhin Ghebre, Chelsea Hotel Toronto
Yosief Ogbasellasie (trustee), Sheraton Centre