We recently became aware that the Hilton Metropole has been the focus of criticism over the way that their hotel workers are treated. FIL organisers had a hugely constructive meeting with Unite, and we are extremely grateful for their time. Below is the text of a statement from Unite explaining why a boycott of FIL or the Hilton Metropole is counterproductive.
Unite Hotel Workers Branch has not called for a boycott of the Hilton Metropole or any other hotel. We do not feel a boycott is an effective way of raising the issues with global hotel chains. The best a boycott might achieve is that staff on zero hours contracts would not get allocated work for the day. Our Fair Tips Campaign has shown that consumer influence is more powerful when guests and customers make their feelings know when the attend events in hotels such as the Metropole, rather than simply staying away. We can offer guidance on things that delegates can do.
Not a single London hotel pays the living wage (£9.15 p/h). Low pay, zero hour contracts and open hostility towards trade unions by leading global hotel chains means that London is fast becoming the most unethical tourist destination in the world. Our graphic novel is called "Tale of Two Cities" because we are drawing direct comparisons with New York where the sector is over 80% unionised, and where workers are paid three times more than their London counterparts. It is our aim to get UK hotel workers organised and part of a union, so that they too can get a better, fairer deal at work.