Two-hundred hotel workers at Sheraton Brussels hotel in Belgium have paid the price of a conflict between the owner, the UK-based property group International Real Estate Ltd, and Starwood, recently bought by Marriott. The hotel owner and Starwood could not agree on who should pay for renovation and asbestos removal.
The hotel was built in the early 70’s and its renovation would cost some 50 million Euros. The renegotiation of the management contract also failed, so, as a result, the management left the hotel which continued to operate under self-management. On December 12, the Sheraton Brussels was declared bankrupt and 200 workers found themselves jobless.
If the post-bankruptcy renovation takes longer than 6 months, the maximum period of employment protection provided by law, the hotel will not have to re-hire current staff and new staff will be employed with lower conditions.
The IUF’s Belgian affiliates FGTB-Horval, ACV-CSC and ACLVB-CGSLB are asking you to send protest letters using the attached draft letter to put pressure on the hotel owner to open space for unions to negotiate an agreement which would assure workers to be re-hired once the hotel will be re-opened.
Please send copies of protest letters to Grace Papa at g.papa@acv-csc.be, Regional Secretary, ACV-CSC, and copy the IUF at iuf@iuf.org
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