Obama’s Finance Chair Broils Striking Hotel Workers

By: Thursday July 21, 2011 3:30 pm

Penny Sue Pritzker, the Hyatt Hotels heiress whose Superior Bank subprime loan corruption made her unfit to serve as Barack Obama’s Commerce Secretary, has a strike on her hands at the Park Hyatt in Chicago, where temperatures approached 100 degrees today.

Penny Sue’s response to the workers striking for better conditions for housekeepers after almost two years of stalled negotiations? Turn on the heat lamps under the glass awnings, right where the picket line is.

Mopping Up Corporate Greed

By: Thursday October 1, 2009 1:40 pm

Photo credit: UNITE HERE

Hotel housekeepers around the country have had enough. Yesterday, more than 350 housekeepers and their supporters launched a seven-city nationwide “Hope for Housekeepers” tour.

They kicked it off in Long Beach, Calif., carrying a seven-foot by 60-foot “Hope Quilt” on a mile-long pilgrimage from the Hilton Long Beach to the Hyatt Regency Long Beach to symbolize their struggle for decent working conditions.

“Hope for Housekeepers” is a national movement of women, founded by Hyatt housekeepers across the country, to stop the abuse of women in the hotel industry and bring a message of hope to Hyatt housekeepers and women working as housekeepers across the globe. The tour will travel to San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Antonio, Boston, Indianapolis and Chicago.

As Jane has pointed out, Penny Pritzker, of the massively wealthy Pritzker family who chairs four major corporations, including Hyatt, is a vocal opponent of workers’ freedom to form unions, strongly opposing the Employee Free Choice Act.

Earlier this year, Pritzker joined with other billionaires to fight the Employee Free Choice Act. She told President Obama she is opposed to majority verification (card-check), which would give workers another choice—a labor board election is the other option—when deciding whether to join a union.

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