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Hilton illegally failed to consult union, Court of Appeals says



Hilton Hotel. Deposit Photo

Hilton illegally failed to consult union, Court of Appeals says


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A Hilton hotel property violated federal labor laws a federal court of appeals court ruled, reports Bloomberg Law.

According to Bloomberg, the hotel failed “to bargain with a housekeepers’ union” regarding hotel renovations that made it more challenging to meet their room-cleaning quotas.

A Washington D.C. appellate court ruled that the Hilton property in Anchorage Alaska should have consulted with a union prior to increase the responsibilities of housekeeping staff, the Bloomberg report noted.

According to court documents obtained by the Wisconsin Law Journal, Hilton Anchorage’s behavior was in direct violation of the National Labor Relations Act.

The dispute between Hilton and the Union arose back in 2018, when the Hilton substantially renovated the hotel, including replacing the old bathtub showers in about half of the
hotel guest rooms with walk-in, glass-walled showers. After the renovations were largely complete, Hilton unilaterally required the housekeepers to meet the same room cleaning work quotas that were in place before the renovations, even though the housekeepers claimed that the rooms were harder to clean and involved different work skills and equipment. The Company also threatened to discipline housekeepers for failing to meet the more difficult room cleaning quotas, court documents state.

The Union filed an unfair labor practice charge with the Board challenging the unilateral actions taken by Hilton insofar as the actions affected bargaining unit employees. The
Board’s General Counsel issued a Complaint, charging Hilton with violating Sections 8(a)(1) and 8(a)(5) of the Act. See 29 U.S.C. § 158(a)(1), (5). After a hearing before an
Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”), the Board found that Hilton had committed unfair labor practices by: (1) failing 3 to provide the Union with requested information relevant to
bargaining; (2) unilaterally changing its housekeepers’ duties when it increased the work required per room but maintained the same room-cleaning quota; and (3) threatening its housekeepers with discipline if they failed to comply with the increased workload requirements. See CP Anchorage Hotel 2, 371 N.L.R.B. No. 151, at *3 (Sept. 29, 2022) (“Board Decision”). The Board ordered the Hilton to rescind the unlawful changes to the housekeepers’ working conditions to the full degree practicable and to make the housekeepers whole for any loss of earnings from Hilton’s unlawful conduct, court documents stated.

The Appeals court said, “Although (Hilton) had no obligation to bargain with the Union over its choice to renovate the hotel, it had an obligation to provide information to the Union
about the renovations—so that the Union could evaluate possible impacts on its members—and to bargain over increases in employee workloads following the renovations. Substantial evidence supports the Board’s findings that (Hilton) failed to meet these obligations, thus violating the Act, and then committed a further unfair labor practice by threatening employees.”

“For the reasons set forth above, we deny (Hilton’s) petition for review and grant the Board’s cross-application for enforcement of its order,” the Court concluded.

As previously reported by the Wisconsin Law Journal, Hilton Hotels are under fire for hosting allegedly racist right-wing extremist event.

Hilton also made headlines last month after a Hilton Doubletree lawsuit was filed involving an 8-year-old who died after being sucked into swimming pool pipe.


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