Hilton staffers’ suit protests practices

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week Restaurant servers and housekeepers at the hotel make $6.75 to $11.75 an hour, according to the lawsuit. Some workers earn tips on top of that. If a judge certifies the case as a class-action, the suit could represent a class of more than 100 workers, plus past and future employees in the same position. “This is an industry where people are exploited and where they are rushed and a lot of work is demanded of them,” said Ira Gottlieb, an attorney for the workers. “And so in order to complete what is needed, they miss breaks and there may be other shortcuts that cause violations by the employers.” Mendoza said the company started keeping better track of employees’ hours and breaks after November 2004, so instances of employees working through their breaks has decreased compared to the previous dozen years he worked at the Hilton. But employees occasionally still must work through their breaks, he said. Workers at the hotel went public with their union drive in September, and since then Unite Here Local 11 has held rallies in front of the hotel to pressure hotel management to remain neutral in the organizing campaign. Glendale Hilton general manager Linda Norman declined to comment on the lawsuit because she had not seen it. But she said the hotel is not taking a neutral position on the unionization drive. The union drive is being done by a minority of workers, and joining a union would not benefit employees, she said. “We are continuing to communicate with our team – I have had a lot of team members with questions – just continue to be a resource,” she said. Mendoza, who is on the committee working to unionize the hotel, said he has not specifically complained to management about having to work through breaks. “I never really like dared to do that because I’m afraid,” Mendoza said. “I’m scared, man. I can’t lose my job. It pays my rent.” The Los Angeles Superior Court suit was filed in downtown Los Angeles. The plaintiffs are seeking unpaid wages and overtime; a court injunction ordering the Hilton to stop the alleged practice of expecting employees to work off the clock; and attorney fees. Alex Dobuzinskis, (818) 546-3304 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! GLENDALE – Three housekeepers and a waiter filed a proposed class-action lawsuit against the Glendale Hilton, alleging they were expected to come in early or work through breaks for no pay. The legal action comes as some workers are trying to form a union at the four-diamond hotel, where managers say unionization is not in the best interest of employees. “We are like really understaffed and we get the job done, but we’re like killing ourselves,” said waiter Juan Mendoza, 36, one of the plaintiffs. The lawsuit alleges housekeepers are required to come in 20 to 60 minutes early and set up their carts before making their daily rounds. The suit also states that during busy times employees are expected to work through their meal and rest breaks, even though they are not paid for that time. last_img read more