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CHICAGO (CBS) – Workers at the Hyatt Regency Hotel downtown are on strike, in a one-day walkout in response to an attempt by the hotel giant to outsource labor.
The workers, represented by Unite HERE Local 1, say the move could affect housekeepers, bellmen, dishwashers and other workers.
As of 5 a.m., more than 100 people were picketing outside the entrance to the hotel, at 151 E. Wacker Dr. Guests are not expected to be impacted by the strike.
The dispute between the hotel and workers has been going on for almost two years.
On Monday morning, Hyatt issued a statement calling the labor action “unfortunate.”
Hyatt says it is disappointed that “a week after a major trade show pulled out of Chicago, citing labor issues and high costs, that UniteHere would stage this production.”
Hyatt claims Unite HERE is “mischaracterizing the good jobs we offer for hotel associates, who make an average of $50,000 per year in Chicago with full health benefits, pension and many other great benefits.”
LISTEN: Newsradio 780′s Mary Frances Bragiel reports
Hyatt points out that its latest proposal in negotiations with the union did not ask for any employee concessions, and matched the pay and benefits the union had agreed to at other local hotels, but still, the union rejected the Hyatt proposal. Hyatt has filed an unfair labor practice complaint against the Unite HERE.