A tentative agreement for a new contract between Marriott Hotels and its workers in San Francisco brings to an end one of the largest hotel strikes in decades. Confirming the agreement, a Marriott International spokesperson says the hotel chain “look[s] forward to welcoming our associates back to work.”
Roughly 2,500 workers have picketed for about two months at San Francisco’s seven Marriott-owned hotels, demanding better pay, benefits, and job security. The action began on October 3, an 8,000 person national effort at Marriott hotels from Boston to Hawaii. San Francisco Marriott workers continued their strike, organized by the union Unite Here Local 2, for weeks after agreements were reached in other cities including Oakland and San Jose.
“This hard-fought contract sets a new and transformative standard for SF’s hotel industry,” said Unite Here Local 2 president Anand Singh.
Nicholas Javier, a server at the Oak Room in the St. Francis Hotel and a member of Unite Here Local 2’s bargaining committee, described the scene at his hotel this morning as jubilant.
“I feel comfortable saying we reached a place that feels fair to all of our basic, core demands,” Javier says. “We’re stronger now than ever.”
Marriott’s new contract would also raise the standard across the local industry: Contract negotiations can now begin for 5,500 San Francisco hotel workers at other companies represented by Unite Here Local 2 (they’ve worked without a contract in place for months).
“It’s something we can feel very proud of going forward, raising the standard for all non-Marriott workers that are also our members,” says Javier, “and for workers in general,”
The new Marriott contract will last through 2022 and still awaits a final ratification vote. Details of the tentative agreement have not been released.
While he was mentally prepared to continue the strike, Javier says he’s happy to get back to work. “I’m looking forward to going back to my restaurant — it’s like our second home.”