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Management And Training

Hotel workers weigh strike, boycott after salary cuts

March 17, 2010
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PROVIDENCE, RI — Hotel workers at the Westin Providence are planning to decide Thursday whether to strike or call for a boycott after deep salary and health care cuts, according to the Providence Journal.

According to the story, hotel owners the Procaccianti Group imposed the changes for the 250 workers — 200 of which are unionized and have been working without a contract since October — effective March 14, including a 20 percent salary cut, a 43 percent increase in the worker contribution to healthcare premiums and the addition of a $500 deductible.

Ralph V. Izzi Jr., communications director for the Procaccianti Group, said in a statement: "The hotel understands the ''human impact'' of such a decision; however the ''reset'' is absolutely critical to preserve existing jobs and to ensure the long-term sustainability of one of the state''s landmark assets."
Workers, however, said the changes came as a surprise, and they have filed an unfair labor practices complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, the story stated.
The union has been taking votes to determine their next actions and will announce at 4 p.m. tomorrow, the story noted.
Union organizer Francis Engler said: "Obviously, a strike would be the most extreme measure, but it''s on the table."
The potential strike comes as the hotel is experiencing its busiest time of the season with the first round of the South and Midwest regionals of the annual NCAA Division I mens basketball tournament beginning on Thursday, the story added.
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