Newsom sits in on hotel talks

No resolution was in sight Monday for The City’s growing hotel labor dispute — despite involvement of Mayor Gavin Newsom, who rushed home from a Hawaiian vacation last week to address the clash.

The City’s major hotel chains are trying to hammer out deals with their workers to avoid a strike, which could cripple The City’s tourism industry. The union contract expired Aug. 14.

On Monday, Newsom met with managers of four major hotel chains and the union representing 9,000 workers at 61 city hotels for what was described as an informational session. A federal mediator attended but only listened to both sides, an attendee said.

“I thought [the talks] were honest, open and all the issues were put on the table,” said Richard Curial, chief negotiator with Starwood Hotels.

Attendee Mike Casey, president Unite Here! Local 2, said he didn’t think the hotels, owned by global corporations, would care about what Newsom thinks.

“It’s not a knock on [Newsom], but it’s one city, one mayor against global corporations,” Casey said.

The union held a three-day strike last week involving 300 workers at the Grand Hyatt Union Square. It says it will continue to stage boycotts at various other hotels in the coming days if talks continue to digress.

The union will next meet with Grand Hyatt management Thursday.

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