Local 40 Job Posting: Communications Specialist (F/T)

UNITE HERE is a progressive labour union, dedicated to creating greater equality and opportunity for workers in the hospitality industry. Communications Specialists are embedded in local worker campaigns and play a crucial role in designing comprehensive communications strategies using digital platforms, earned media and multi-media tools to raise the visibility of worker struggles. As a Communications Specialist with UNITE HERE Local 40, you will be part of a team that empowers people in low-wage service sector jobs to achieve better wages and benefits, dignity and basic rights at work.

Key responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Developing, in collaboration with union leadership and members, messaging and materials for effective communication with news media, the general public, union members and allies;
  • Developing and leading strategic communication plans for contract, organizing and other advocacy campaigns;
  • Planning and implementing earned media outreach, including pitching news stories, organizing media events, such as press conferences;
  • Maintaining Local 40’s social media accounts by sourcing, writing, calendaring and publishing engaging content;
  • Writing leaflets, newsletters, website- and e-advocacy content, news releases, fact sheets, social media posts and other content;
  • Managing the production of internal member communications in print and on digital platforms, such as mass texting and emailing;
  • Working with union members in spokesperson trainings, interviews, and participating in events and actions;
  • Documenting events and actions, including taking photos and video, and posting real-time content to social media platforms;

Job Requirements/Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated commitment to social justice and the fight for workers’ rights;
  • BA degree or relevant work experience, with a minimum of one-year experience working in communications.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the capacity to meaningfully engage with and frame issues for people of diverse backgrounds and life experiences;
  • Ability and willingness to travel and work occasional long- or irregular hours during times of critical campaign need;
  • Proven ability to effectively manage a workload with competing priorities and deadlines;
  • Experience using Creative Suite, Action Network, Mobile Commons, Hustle and/or other communications software/platforms a plus.
  • Drivers license.

To apply for this position: please email your resume, cover letter and a sample of your work (or a link to a website portfolio of your work) to [email protected]

Media Advisory: Striking Hotel Workers Reach Tentative Agreement with Rosewood Hotel Georgia, UNITE HERE Local 40 to hold ratification vote today

Hotel workers represented by UNITE HERE Local 40 reached a tentative agreement with Rosewood Hotel Georgia over the weekend. The agreement, if ratified, will bring their eight-week strike to an end. Workers will vote to ratify the contract until 5pm today.

 

“We have finally achieved the contract we deserve. I am very proud of my co-workers for staying united and thankful to all the people who supported us and reminded us that we are not alone. We’ve shown this hotel and others in Vancouver that hotel workers will fight for respect and a fair workplace,” said May Tanjusay, room attendant and union bargaining committee member from Rosewood Hotel Georgia.

 

Once ratified, the settlement will mark the end of a series of hotel strikes in Vancouver that began in September. Rosewood workers received an outpouring of support from the community who supported strikers in weekly actions and from customers who refused to cross the picket line. The workers are expected to return to work Wednesday morning following the ratification vote.

 

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

 

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UNITE HERE Local 40 is the hospitality workers’ union and represents members in the hotel, food service and airport industries throughout British Columbia.

BREAKING: Tentative agreement reached with Rosewood Hotel Georgia

We are happy to announce that a tentative agreement was reached between UNITE HERE Local 40 and the Rosewood Hotel Georgia! Picket lines are down, and we will be holding our contract ratification vote on Monday November 18th. More details to follow.

We want to say a special thank you to our amazing labour and community allies for your solidarity with Vancouver’s striking hotel workers! Together, we have shown the city what working people can achieve.

MEDIA ADVISORY: Rosewood Hotel Georgia strike enters eighth week as holiday season approaches, Strikers hold mass-action today before negotiations resume Friday

What: Hotel workers from Rosewood Hotel Georgia to hold demonstration to mark eighth week on strike.

When: Thursday, November 14, 2019, 5pm

Where: Rosewood Hotel Georgia, 801 West Georgia Street, Vancouver

Who: UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel members on strike at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia, joined in solidarity by hundreds of former striking hotel workers and the Vancouver community.

Note: Frontline UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel workers on strike will be available for interview in person at the action or in advance by phone. To connect with strikers in advance or at the action, contact Sharan.

WHY: As the Hotel Georgia strike enters its eighth week – the longest of its kind in Vancouver’s history – negotiations with hotel management will resume this Friday on the heels of a cease and desist order by the BC Labour Relations Board (LRB) in which Rosewood management was found to have committed multiple breaches of provincial labour law. The LRB issued a cease and desist order against the hotel on October 28.

Strikers recently travelled to Silicon Valley and Hong Kong to lead actions at other Rosewood Hotel locations. International unions and trade federations from around the globe, from California to Myanmar, have recently led delegations in support of the strikers.

B.C.’s performers union, UBCP/ACTRA, and US-based entertainment union SAG-AFTRA have issued notices to performers and production managers to respect the picket line at Rosewood Hotel Georgia and to immediately remove business from the hotel until a settlement is reached.

In September, over 1,200 Vancouver hotel workers went on strike at four high-end hotels in Canada’s most profitable hotel industry. Last month, three of the four hotels agreed to ground-breaking new contracts. Two hundred Rosewood Hotel Georgia workers remain on strike for a contract which matches the five-star service they provide to clientele of this iconic Vancouver hotel. In addition to the demand for fair wages and stable jobs, the hotel has been under scrutiny over its handling of sexual harassment concerns in recent months.

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

Press Release: BREAKING: Rosewood Hotel Georgia Breaches Labour Laws in Attempts to Undermine Hotel Strike

Vancouver – The BC Labour Board ruled this week that the Rosewood Hotel Georgia committed multiple breaches of the province’s labour law and that the Hotel’s use of impermissible replacement workers undermined the ongoing strike of their employees. The strike is now in its sixth week.

Rosewood Hotel Georgia was found in breach of the anti-scab provisions of the Labour Code by using impermissible managers to do the work that would normally be done by the striking employees. The Board has issued a cease and desist order against the Rosewood which has been filed in court for enforcement.

Instead of sitting down and addressing the concerns of their employees that would resolve the historic strike, Rosewood Hotel Georgia instead repeatedly used unauthorized tactics in unsuccessful attempts to mitigate the impact of the strike on services inside the hotel, that are completely shut down without workers. In addition, both the Fairmont Pacific Rim and Shangri-La hotels acknowledged that the Hotel Georgia had reached out to them and that they had accommodated hotel reservations from guests leaving Hotel Georgia. Pursuant to a consent order the hotels will not offer further assistance to the Hotel Georgia during the strike and will not oppose the union seeking to picket at the hotels if they are found to be allies of the Hotel Georgia in the future. Hundreds of Rosewood Hotel Georgia workers remain on strike for a contract which provides a five-star standard for workplace safety including sexual harassment protections, economic and job security improvements in Vancouver.

“Our members at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia work hard on a daily basis to provide the five-star service the hotel is known for. They are fighting for better working conditions now, a brighter future at this hotel, and are demanding respect long-overdue at the Rosewood. Hotel management has broken off negotiations twice, and is refusing to meet with staff at the bargaining table to address their concerns. Instead of resolving this labour dispute, management is doing the work of our members, undermining the strike and attempting to run the hotel without us. We will remain on strike until the Rosewood Hotel Georgia starts behaving like a five-star hotel and acts as a responsible employer,” said Zailda Chan, UNITE HERE Local 40 President.

The Hyatt Regency, Westin Bayshore and Pinnacle Harbourfront hotels reached agreements to settle their strikes on October 16 with contracts that set new standards on compensation, workplace safety and job protection for hotel workers that will transform the lives of their employees. Despite this, Canada’s top-rated hotel has now become an outlier and is the only hotel still under strike. UNITE HERE Local 40 urges the hotel to return the bargaining table immediately and respect their workers whose five-star service has no substitute, illegal or otherwise.

 

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

Media Advisory: BREAKING: Negotiations with Hotel Georgia break down again, striking Hotel Georgia workers to confront Pacific Reach Properties demanding a return to the table

What: Hotel workers rally

When: Thursday, October 24, 2019, 5pm

Where: Hotel Belmont, 654 Nelson Street, Vancouver

Who: UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel workers on strike at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia, joined in solidarity by former striking workers and the Vancouver community

WHY: Yesterday, in the fifth week of the strike, negotiations with Rosewood Hotel Georgia broke down for a second time, with the company refusing to continue bargaining and address staff concerns. Rosewood Hotel Georgia workers have been on strike for over a month, and Hotel Georgia is the only luxury hotel in Vancouver still under strike after three others agreed to contract demands that ended the strike at their properties more than a week ago. Join workers as they demand management return to the table and settle a contract which provides a five-star standard for economic, workplace safety and job security improvements in Vancouver.

The Rosewood Hotel Georgia and the Hotel Belmont have both come under media scrutiny recently for sexual harassment. Hotel Georgia workers walked off the job in part over Pacific Reach Properties’ dangerous working conditions for women which put them at risk for injury and assault at the Hotel Georgia. A recent survey and human rights complaint exposed the sexual harassment issues prevalent for staff at the five-star hotel. Despite this, Canada’s top-rated hotel is the only hotel still under strike – refusing to meet and negotiate with their 200 striking employees.

Last month, female staff from the Hotel Belmont filed human rights complaints against Pacific Reach Properties. Their accounts detail experiences of harassment and assault including management refusing to take action to remove guests who sexually harass and intimidate female workers. As more women continue to speak out about the practices of hotels owned by Pacific Reach Properties, the group has yet to settle a contract that would keep women safe at Hotel Georgia, or to offer any meaningful sexual harassment protections to the non-union Belmont Hotel workers.

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

Press Release: Vancouver Hotel Strikers Celebrate Historic Raises of up to 25% at Multiple Downtown Hotels, Strike Continues at Hotel Georgia

Vancouver – As of 6:00pm on October 16, 2019, UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel workers on strike at the Hyatt Regency, Westin Bayshore, and Pinnacle Harbourfront voted to ratify a historic new contract for those properties as well as at the Four Seasons, with industry leading gains including raises of up to 25%. In addition, new standards around workplace safety, sexual harassment, and job security have been pioneered in the new contracts.

 

The ratification of these contracts ends a 28 day strike of three major downtown Vancouver properties, yet the strike continues at Hotel Georgia. In addition to establishing industry transforming wage standards, the new contracts include innovative sexual harassment protections, workload reductions, and improvements in benefits and job security for restaurant and kitchen staff. The vote to approve this new contract ends the picket lines outside and boycotts of Hyatt, Westin and Pinnacle hotels, with workers at these properties proudly returning to work today.

 

“Our members are key to the success of these luxury hotels, and they chose the sacrifice of striking in order to win improved working conditions, respect and a real future in this industry,” said Zailda Chan, President of UNITE HERE Local 40. “This is the first hotel strike in Vancouver in nearly two decades , and I’m deeply moved by the courage and vision of our members in taking on this fight. With this contract we have achieved a new standard in the hospitality industry which will improve the lives of not only our own members and their families, but the lives of all hotel workers in Vancouver. This strike has sent a strong message to the industry, not to underestimate the power of working people. We will now turn the momentum of this historic victory to the Rosewood Hotel Georgia, where our strikers have been without a contract for ten months and management has failed to offer acceptable working conditions, wages, or security.”

 

“Our new contract is proof to me that Vancouver is our city!” said Nassa Chantacheevakul, banquet server at Pinnacle Harbourfront Hotel. “As a millennial worker in Metro Vancouver, this contract will make the difference for me between struggling to make rent each month to being able to truly build a life here. I’m proud of what my coworkers and I won – we picketed, we rallied, we made ourselves heard, and we took care of each other during the 28 days of this strike. Not a single Vancouver hotel worker crossed the picket lines, and we proved what can be achieved in a union! We won raises higher than our bosses said we ever could. I look forward to going back to work and back to serving my guests!”

 

Almost two hundred hotel workers remain on strike at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia. UNITE HERE Local 40 calls on Hotel Georgia to settle this strike.

 

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

Media Advisory: Tentative Agreement Reached with Westin Bayshore, Hyatt Regency, Pinnacle Harbourfront and Four Seasons hotels!

ANNOUCEMENT

Early this morning, a tentative agreement was reached between UNITE HERE Local 40 and the Westin Bayshore, Hyatt Regency, Pinnacle Harbourfront and Four Seasons hotels, representing approximately 1,500 downtown Vancouver hotel workers.

This ground-breaking agreement secures significant wage increases for hotel staff over a four-year period, implements protections against sexual harassment, strengthens job security for room attendants and kitchen and restaurant workers, and maintains health insurance.

“Our strike has made the changes we need in the hotel industry! I’m very happy about the workload reductions for room attendants. The job security we’ve won is also great for our members, our families and will keep our union strong. I’m very proud of our members, we’ve picketed through rain and cold weather for this fight, and we feel united and strong with this tentative agreement reached.” – Teresita Gonzales, Room Attendant Supervisor, Pinnacle Habourfront hotel

No agreement has been reached yet with the Rosewood Hotel Georgia, where the strike continues.

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

Media Advisory: Tomorrow NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh Joins Striking Vancouver Hotel Workers to Celebrate Thanksgiving!

What: Hotel Workers Thanksgiving Lunch

When: Monday, October 14, 2019 at 12:30pm

Where: The Westin Bayshore, 1601 Bayshore Drive, Vancouver

 

Who: UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel workers entering their fourth week on strike at four downtown Vancouver hotels (Rosewood Hotel Georgia, Hyatt Regency, Westin Bayshore, Pinnacle Harbourfront), including hotel room attendants, cooks, front desk workers, and bellmen.

Note: Frontline UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel workers on strike now for job security, a safe workplace, and wages that make one job enough to live in Vancouver will be available for interview in person at the action or in advance by phone. To connect with strikers in advance or at the action, contact Sharan.

 

WHY: 1,200 Vancouver hotel workers are on strike for the first time in nearly 20 years, demanding that American hotel corporations like Marriott stop paying Canadian workers less than American workers. This Thanksgiving long weekend Jagmeet Singh, leader of Canada’s NDP and MP for Burnaby South, joins the strikers as they hold a feast in celebration of their fight, proud to stand united for job security, safe workplaces and wages which would make one job enough to live in Vancouver. They work for companies like Marriott which made over $2.8 billion in Canada alone last year. While Marriott gets richer, workers at their hotels like the Westin Bayshore are overworked to the risk of injury, can lose their jobs if the owner decides to close and reopen a new restaurant, and need wages that keep up with the rising cost of living. Vancouver’s hotel workers are proud to stand up to Marriott and the other corporations, developers and investors who own and operate hotels in our city that have made a life in Vancouver unaffordable. Jagmeet Singh is the first federal party leader to show support for striking hotel workers in their fight for secure and safe jobs in Canada’s most expensive city.

 

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]

Media Advisory: Happy Thanksgiving! No Thanks to Marriott, Strikers to Mobilize at Marriott, Demanding Equal Pay to American Workers

What: Hotel Striker Demonstrations at Marriott

When: Thursday, October 10, 2019 at 5pm

Where: JW Marriott Parq Vancouver hotel, 39 Smithe Street, Vancouver

Who: UNITE HERE Local 40 hotel workers on strike, including hotel room attendants, cooks, front desk workers, and bellmen.

Note: Frontline UNITE HERE Local 40 strikers on strike now for job security, a safe workplace, and wages that make one job enough to live in Vancouver will be available for interview in person at the action or in advance by phone. To connect with strikers or union leadership in advance or at the action, contact Sharan. 

WHY: U.S.-based Marriott Corporation is the largest hotel company in the world. Marriott made over $2.8 billion in Canada alone last year. While Marriott gets richer, workers at their hotels like the Westin Bayshore are overworked to the risk of injury, can lose their jobs if the owner decides to close and reopen a new restaurant, and are being offered about half of what U.S. Marriott workers are getting.

We don’t need big U.S. corporations treating Canadians like they’re worth less! As the strike reaches the third week and Thanksgiving approaches, strikers will confront Marriott on Thursday, demanding that Canadian workers receive equity to all North American standards.

Contact: Sharan Pawa, 604-725-0053, [email protected]