Thursday, November 04, 2004

SF Chronicle Spin -- AAA and Hilton Cut Deal, Save Face

If you're angered by this post:
1) "Support the UNITE HERE Local 2 Solidarity Fund."
2) Boycott the Atlanta Hilton if you go to the AAA.
3) Let us know what San Francisco events you'll be doing the week of 11/16-11/22 to pressure the Hilton and the other MEG hotels.

San Francisco Chronicle
Monday, November 1, 2004
Phillip Matier, Andrew Ross
[From "California's North-South split now East-West"]

Anthropology digs: If you want evidence that San Francisco's hotel lockout is hurting the city more than the hoteliers, look no further than the American Anthropological Association's decision to move its convention out of town.

The group had planned to meet here later this month, with nearly all 5, 000 members set to stay at the San Francisco Hilton.

But when the labor dispute hit high gear -- with 14 hotels locking out 4,000 cooks, cleaners, bartenders and others, after employees had called a two- week strike at four of the hotels -- the union-sympathizing anthropological association decided to move its gathering to Atlanta.

Breaking the San Francisco Hilton contract, however, would have left the association on the hook for as much as $1.2 million.

'We aren't very flush with money and couldn't just do that,'' said Ghita Levine, the group's spokeswoman.

Upshot: The association and Hilton cut a deal, agreeing to move the convention to the nonunion Atlanta Hilton, where the group had already signed on for a future meeting anyway.

So while the anthropologists got to send a message that they wouldn't cross the picket lines in San Francisco, they apparently did little to hurt the hotel chain's bottom line.

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