Hotel workers with Unite Here Local 11 march through downtown L.A. calling for a "fair contract" from numerous major hotels in the region in Los Angeles on Oct. 25, 2023. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)
PASADENA, Calif.—Cooks, room attendants, and other workers at the Hilton Pasadena and Hyatt Place Pasadena hotels will walk off the job at dawn on New Year’s Eve, just as Pasadena gets ready to host the Rose Parade and Rose Bowl Game, union officials said Dec. 27.
Workers across Los Angeles hotels have been engaged in ongoing labor disputes with employers since July, in what the Unite Here Local 11 union calls the largest hotel worker strike in modern history.
The workers’ primary goals include wage increases to keep pace with the soaring cost of housing in Los Angeles, quality and affordable health insurance, and humane workloads, according to Unite Here Local 11, which staged walkouts at hotels across Southern California and Arizona over the summer.
A representative for Aimbridge Hospitality, operator of the Hilton Pasadena, did not immediately respond to requests for comment left by City News Service. A spokesman for Hyatt Place Pasadena operator Ensemble Hospitality said no one was available Wednesday to comment on the strike situation.
Pasadena is home to the Rose Bowl Game and Rose Parade, which take place Jan. 1. The escalating labor dispute will impact guests of the Hilton and Hyatt Place Pasadena during these events, given that no agreement has been reached at these properties, according to the union.
Lisa Derderian, spokeswoman for the city of Pasadena, said in a statement to the City News Service, “We have been and will continue to work with the unions on safe and lawful ways in which they can express their rights to free speech and demonstrations.
“Public safety is our priority and it’s our obligation to protect the health and safety and well-being of our community. We plan for all types of events that could occur during the Parade/Game and are prepared to address potential scenarios. We hope any groups who have negative intent understand and respect the law and allow for an enjoyable experience for the thousands of visitors who are in town.”
Unite Here says the strike comes after numerous tentative contract agreements were reached across Los Angeles and Orange County. Major Marriott and Hilton properties across Southern California, such as the JW Marriott and Hilton Irvine, reached agreements with their workers in the past month.
However, Aimbridge and Ensemble have “consistently refused to meet the new hotel contract standards,” the union said, alleging that Ensemble’s Hotel Maya in Long Beach has recently come under fire “for being the site of violence against a hotel employee for the second time since August.”
The workers, also including dishwashers, servers, bellmen, and front desk agents, will conduct a New Year’s Eve parade of their own beginning at 6 p.m. at the Hilton Pasadena, according to the labor union.
Unite Here Local 11 says it represents more than 32,000 hospitality workers in Southern California and Arizona who are employed in hotels, restaurants, universities, convention centers, and airports.