Nanaimo, B.C. — Today, dozens of Coast Bastion hotel workers and community allies escalated their protest at the Coast Bastion by delivering a petition signed by workers to hotel management. With momentum on their side, they announced that if the hotel continues to mistreat workers, they will move towards multiple actions including calling a customer boycott of the hotel. The Coast Bastion is using the pandemic to eliminate the practice of daily room cleaning, and destroy wages and job security. Coast Bastion hotel workers are represented by UNITE HERE Local 40.
“We are thoroughly disappointed with hotel management. The Coast Bastion is attempting to use the pandemic to strip provisions from our contract at a time when they should be helping us get through the crisis. While our fight is for all the workers who have made this hotel successful, our housekeepers are the backbone of the hospitality industry. It’s outrageous that they’re being abused with an excessive workload — and getting hurt because of the hotel’s inhumane actions. Coast Bastion: treat us with respect, not like we’re just a number,” said Paul Suffron, who has worked in the maintenance department at the Coast Bastion for five years.
Coast Bastion fired nearly 50 long-term staff in December and refuses to commit to bring them back as business recovers. This September, over 1000 BC hospitality workers won recall rights and protections for union health care and pension, in a four-year agreement with Hospitality Industrial Relations. As BC’s hotel industry recovers from the pandemic and commits to bring workers back to their jobs, Coast Bastion and other Coast hotels in Victoria and Prince George are leaving workers behind.
UNITE HERE Local 40 launched the BC Unequal Women campaign earlier this year to call attention to how women in the hospitality industry are disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. Coast Bastion workers, many of them women bearing the brunt of COVID-19, have dedicated years of service to the hotel which has long served as a venue for union meetings and conventions.
For additional information, please contact Stephanie Fung, 604-928-7356, firstname.lastname@example.org
UNITE HERE Local 40 is the hospitality workers’ union and represents members in the hotel, food service, camp, and airport industries throughout British Columbia. Learn more at UniteHereLocal40.org.