At the Intersection of LGBT and Labor Rights, Gay Latinos Stand in Solidarity with their Union Brothers and Sisters


The Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center Dishonors Worker-Called Boycott of Hyatt Hotels

EAST LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - The Latino Equality Alliance announced its support of the Unite HERE Local 11 union in its boycott of the Hyatt Hotels and is urging union members, elected officials and LGBT community leaders to stand in solidarity. In support of theworker-called boycott, an LGBT visibility rally will form at 5 pm on November 13, 2010, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Century City in censure of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center’s decision to not relocate its annual Gala event in spite of various opportunities to do so since the boycott was announced on September 15, 2010.

"After the majority vote in favor of Proposition 8, it became painfully clear the LGBT community needed to do more to increase support from people of color communities. Subsequently, Latino community leaders established the Latino Equality Alliance ("LEA") to work within the Latino and LGBT communities and make sure the interests of each are acknowledged and understood. A large part of LEA’S LGBT outreach and education work is within the intersection of social justice issues including winning the support of the rank and file membership of labor unions,” explained Ari Gutierrez, Co-Chair of the Latino Equality Alliance. “In fact, the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center's Vote for Equality canvassing for marriage equality has focused its efforts in the same communities for the same reasons and this is where many union workers live."

The political empowerment of the Latino community itself is rooted in the success of the Labor movement. The labor movement priorities include the assurance of quality of life issues and dignity for the working class. The same is true for the LGBT movement inclusive of the entire community, which includes working class people of color and union members. Clearly, support for LGBT people and issues rely on the recognition and respect for our shared value for fairness whether at the ballot box, the court room or the labor negotiating table.

The hotel workers union has been a strong ally of the LGBT community and made a sacrificial donation of $100,000 to the No on Prop. 8 campaign when we needed their help. The LGBT community must stand in solidarity with our union brothers and sisters in support of workers' rights and fair wages at every opportunity. We wouldn’t expect less from them in our struggle for social justice.

"The L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center, as a 12-year customer of the Hyatt, has a clear opportunity to affect the bargaining power of the hotel union’s boycott. Rationalizing the decision to not be inconvenienced is not acceptable in this situation just as a lack of support for LGBT issues by a majority vote is unacceptable to the LGBT community," stated Eddie Martinez, Co-Chair of the Latino Equality Alliance. "As a $52 million organization

the largest gay and lesbian center in the world -- it is unfortunate the Center has decided to go forward with its annual Gala without compromise or consideration of the working people of the hotel union and a lack of respect for the Labor movement itself," he added.