Dozens Arrested in San Francisco Marriott Protest - NBC Bay Area
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Dozens Arrested in San Francisco Marriott Protest

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    Striking Marriott Hotel Workers March in San Francisco

    Striking Marriott Hotel workers took to the streets of San Francisco late Friday afternoon. Sergio Quintana reports.

    (Published Friday, Oct. 12, 2018)

    Dozens of striking hotel workers in San Francisco have been arrested after sitting down in the street and blocking downtown traffic.

    The rally and march started on Friday at the Yerba Buena Plaza on Market Street, between 3rd and 4th streets. Organizers said workers demonstrated in response to contract negotiations.

    "They’ve been automating things and they have been eliminating jobs," said Marriott Marquis employee Danel Burns. "Room service was one of those jobs that was one of those jobs to go a few years ago."

    Union members said they love working for Marriott but they need better pay and some job security.

    "They’re really really, and incredibly profitable company, and it’s a beautiful thing to work for them and we would really like to be counted and treated like we’re valued," said Marriott Marquis employee Jessica Etheridge.

    About 40 hotel union workers who demonstrated by sitting in front of the Marriott Marquis on 4th Street were detained. Police said they were charged with failure to obey a traffic officer, a misdemeanor.

    Several streets in the area were also shut down and affected traffic in the city's South of Market District during the demonstration.

    They're among nearly 8,000 workers that have walked off jobs at Marriotts from Boston to Honolulu. Marriott is the world's largest hotel operator.

    As the demonstration drags on, both sides of the labor dispute don't seem to be backing down. However, some people who live in the neighborhood are getting tired of the noise.

    "I get what they’re trying to do, I just don’t know if this is the right way, just frustrating when you live here and work here," said SOMA resident Ashley Carrillo.

    Several San Francisco hotels are affected. At the St. Regis Hotel, they've installed sound deadening panels on the windows of the second floor. However, that doesn't help Sue and Dick Wollack who live in the hotel and have windows facing the street.

    "I’m behind them with, they can’t get enough money for one job, I believe in that, but they’ve carried it way too far with all the noise," Sue said.

    The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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