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HYATT HOTEL WORKERS SETTLE THREE-YEAR CONTRACT DISPUTE

        HYATT HOTEL WORKERS SETTLE THREE-YEAR CONTRACT DISPUTE
    LOS ANGELES, Nov. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- The following is being issued


by Local 11 Hotel Employees & Restaurant Employees Union, AFL-CIO:
    In what marks the end of a lengthy and difficult struggle for a union contract, three L.A. area Hyatt hotels and Local 11 of the Hotel & Restaurant Employees Union will sign a three-year collective bargaining agreement at a press conference Monday, Nov. 4, at 2 p.m. in the Hyatt Regency Hotel.  (The hotel is on the corner of Hope and 7th streets.)
    The agreement was ratified Friday by a 269-0 secret ballot vote of workers from the Hyatt Regency, Hyatt-on-Sunset and Hyatt Wilshire hotels.  It offers guaranteed medical and pension benefits, generous wage increases and improved working conditions for more than 500 employees.
    "Hyatt, like the rest of the hotel industry, had to choose between two courses of action," said Local 11 President Maria Elena Durazo. "Under the current economic conditions, hotels in L.A. can either burden their employees with the brunt of the recession by whittling away at wages and benefits, or acknowledge that decent wages and benefits together with positive labor relations are in fact critical to the recovery of the tourism industry in our city.
    "We are extremely pleased that Hyatt has now chosen the second course," Durazo continued, "although, in the meantime, this contract dispute took a terrible toll on our members, on Hyatt and on the entire L.A. community.  We look forward to re-establishing a positive working relationship with Hyatt -- with this generous contract as the first step."
    Durazo also says she hopes the Hyatt settlement will serve as a model for other union hotels with whom Local 11 begins contract talks next spring.
    "We sincerely hope that next April does not present a much bigger scale fight when our multi-employer contract with the other major Los Angeles hotels expires," Durazo said.  "Based on our experience with Hyatt, we would see such a confrontation as a very dangerous scenario for our industry and, by extension, for all of Los Angeles.  On the other hand, we would be happy to recommend this settlement to the other Los Angeles employers."
    Hyatt workers have struggled for a union contract since early 1989.  They called for a boycott in May 1991, when the company forced workers to lose their union health benefits.  Weekly picket lines, demonstrations, civil disobedience and work stoppages have characterized the dispute for the past 2 1/2 years.  Over 150 community leaders, clergy and elected officials endorsed the boycott of Hyatt.
    -0-                     11/3/91
    /CONTACT:  Matthew Walker or Somini Sengupta of Local 11 Hotel Employees & Restaurant Employees Union, 213-481-2213/ CO:  Local 11 Hotel Employees & Restaurant Employees Union ST:  California IN: SU: CH -- NYON1 -- 0520 11/03/91 23:54 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 3, 1991
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