PRESS ADVISORY: U.S Senator Bernie Sanders Rallies with Workers from the Hotel Figueroa, Aimbridge, and Blackstone in Downtown Los Angeles

Los Angeles: Senator Bernie Sanders will join rallying workers at Hotel Figueroa on Friday afternoon as part of his visit to the region. Workers at the historic property have been embroiled in a labor dispute for the last eight months as part of the largest hotel worker strike in modern U.S. history and are among those at the 26 hotels that have yet to settle new contracts.

The rally comes as thousands of hotel workers at 35 hotels ratified their contract with an immediate $5 wage increase and $10 increase over the life of the contract, bringing housekeepers up to $35 an hour just before the 2028 Olympics.

But other hotel workers–particularly those at hotels owned or operated by private equity corporations–are still struggling. At the Hotel Figueroa–owned by private equity giant BentallGreenOak (BGO), striking workers allege someone fired ball pellets at them, apparently using an air rifle, while they peacefully picketed outside the hotel in January.  A month later at the same hotel, the food and beverage operator abruptly terminated its operations and fired its workers—only for the restaurant to reopen days later with a new operator contracted by BGO but without its veteran workers.  This week, a class action lawsuit was filed alleging that owner and operators violated workers rights under Los Angeles Hotel Worker Retention Law.

Workers at hotels by other private equity firms—Advent International, owner of Aimbridge Hospitality, and the behemoth firm Blackstone—remain without a contract providing fair working conditions. Of the hotels who have yet to settle, 78% are owned or operated by private equity firms. Workers from those hotels owned by each of these firms will rally with Senator Sanders.

Tourism workers across Los Angeles, including hotel and airport workers, are also calling for the City to raise its minimum wage rates across their sector.  Demanding an “Olympic Wage,” they are calling on the City Council to raise the minimum wage for tourism workers to $25 an hour immediately with increases of a dollar each year each year until the Olympics arrive in LA in 2028.