About 1,500 striking workers at the Hyatt Regency, Westin Bayshore, and Pinnacle Harbourfront hotels voted Oct. 16 to ratify an agreement that provides raises of up to 25 per cent over four years, as well as other perks, the union announced Oct. 17.
The contract also applies to workers at the Four Seasons Hotel as those workers are in the same bargaining collective but were not striking because the hotel is slated to close at the end of January.
Workers at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia remain on strike because they are in a separate bargaining collective.
The 28-day strike started on Sept. 19 and caused loud picket lines that prompted management to file a successful lawsuit in BC Supreme Court that ended with an order for picketing workers not to use amplified sound or create noise that was louder than 75 decibels when at a distance of at least 6.1 meters.
The union, Unite Here Local 40, won a B.C. Labour Relations Board ruling that said that the hotels could not have newly hired managers perform work that had been done by the striking workers.
Employers had offered a 15 per cent pay raise over four years plus heightened vigilance in not tolerating sexual harassment, among other things.
The agreement that ended the strike obtained what the union called “new standards around workplace safety, sexual harassment, and job security.”
It added that “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.”
Michael D’Angelo, the Hyatt's vice-president of labor relations for the Americas, sent Business in Vancouver a statement that said, "Under the new collective bargaining agreement, Hyatt continues to offer our colleagues competitive wages and benefits, including comprehensive healthcare coverage with enhanced benefits, along with additional health and safety resources for colleagues, including personal distress devices."
He said that the company remains "committed to fostering a safe, inclusive workplace that earns an average colleague tenure of more than 12 years and consistent third-party recognition. Our purpose is to care for people so they can be their best, and the wellbeing of our colleagues is our first priority."