UNITE HERE Local 75 Ends Trusteeship, Elects New Local Leadership
On March 29th hospitality workers with UNITE HERE Local 75 elected a new leadership. More than 1/3rd of our membership participated in the election, the highest voter turnout in our local’s history. Our new leadership was elected with a decisive 83% of the vote. The election marks our local’s transition out of trusteeship as we welcome a diverse new set of local leaders.
A Message to Our Labour Movement Sisters and Brothers
Unifor continues its raiding against our union in Toronto. On February 28, 2019 Unifor’s National Office submitted an application to raid our membership at Marriott’s St. Regis Toronto. This is merely the latest development in Unifor’s 14-month raiding effort.
UNITE HERE Local 75 Secures Significant Health Coverage Increases for Members
This month the joint union-management Board of Trustees of the UNITE HERE Health and Welfare Plan secured significant increases to health coverage for all members. These gains include an increase in dependent life insurance coverage to $5,000 for spouses and $2,500 per child for all members as well as dental and prescription drug benefits for the dependents of part-time workers.
GTAs Largest Hospitality Union Gains LPAT Party Status to Protect Chelsea Hotel and Preserve Toronto’s Convention and Hospitality Sector
UNITE HERE Local 75, the largest representative of hotel workers in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), recently obtained party status before the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal in relation to an application by Great Eagle Hotels (Canada) Ltd to redevelop the Chelsea Hotel in downtown Toronto. Great Eagles’ redevelopment proposal is currently under appeal before Ontario’s Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT).
Fairmont Royal York Hotel Workers Ratify Historic New Collective Agreement
Members of UNITE HERE Local 75 ratified a new collective agreement with the Fairmont Royal York Hotel Friday that represents the strongest agreement in Toronto’s hospitality sector. The four-year contract makes Fairmont Royal York workers the highest paid hotel workers in the GTA by far and includes a 14.5% wage increase and a retroactive bonus, more than triples pension contributions, significantly reduces housekeepers’ workloads, and substantiality increases retirement and other paid benefits for all workers.
Read the details of the Tentative Agreement recommended by the UNITE HERE Local 75 Fairmont Royal York Negotiating Committee here.
The Ontario Labour Relations Board counted the votes from a sealed ballot box at the Four Points by Sheraton today, revealing that hotel workers voted to remain with UNITE HERE Local 75, the largest representative of hotel workers in the GTA. Read more >>>
Over 1,000 Canadian labour leaders, members and supporters attend Unity Rally in support of UNITE HERE Local 75 workers at historic Fairmont Royal York Hotel
The Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and dozens of its union affiliates put the weight of the Canadian labour movement behind UNITE HERE Local 75 at a Unity Rally at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel on Monday, March 26, 2018. More than 1,000 Canadian labour leaders, members and supporters came out in a show of solidarity for the nearly 900 UNITE HERE Local 75 workers currently negotiating a new collective agreement with the Fairmont Royal York Hotel. Read more >>>
We represent two-thirds of UNITE HERE Local 75’s former Executive Board. We came to Canada from many different countries to build a better life for ourselves and our families. We are room attendants, servers, cooks, cleaners, stewards, cafeteria workers, and guest service agents. Local 75 is our home and UNITE HERE is our family. The corporations our union goes up against are international and so too, is our union and our struggle.
Our home at Local 75 is strong. It was built with the blood, sweat, and tears of our members. We believe the diversity of our membership has always been our strength, so it hurts us when a “nationalist” message is used to divide us and to damage the home we built together. Read more >>>
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
UNITE HERE Local 75
15 Gervais Drive, Suite 300
Toronto, ON M3C 1Y8
Toll Free: 1-877-410-0707