AFT-Maryland Supports Worker Rallies

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Despite the presence of the Delta and Delta+ variants of the COVID-19 virus, most reopening plans are underway. The return to normalcy hasn’t been completely smooth, especially for hospitality workers. Workers from Unite Here Local 7 at Merriweather Lakehouse, the hotel formerly known as Sheraton Columbia, held a rally demanding their jobs be reinstated when the hotel reopens. During the pandemic-related shutdown, the hotel came under new management. The new management is using the chaos caused by the sale and pandemic to deny workers the opportunity to come back to work on the terms they left their jobs. A collection of workers including cooks, housekeeping as well as banquet staff all spoke up to let their voices be heard during the rally.

AFT-Maryland once again gladly stood by our worker family to call for those jobs to be reinstated. AFT-Maryland’s presence was noticed by community groups and labor allies alike. The solidarity necessary to ensure every worker has a job that affords them dignity and a decent quality of life is a driving force behind the state federation’s solidarity work. Our work on a day-to-day basis is for public employee professionals, but our concern is for every working person in the state of Maryland.

This is what led many AFT-Maryland members and staff back to Baltimore to support workers at the Walters Art Museum. With more than 70% of museum workers singing cards to signify their intent for a union, management has failed to recognize the union. Leadership in charge has been unwilling to meet to discuss an election process that eligible workers can participate in. When our union family called, this time AFSCME Local 67, once again AFT-Maryland answered. The show of solidarity in blue (AFTMD) and green (AFSCME) shirts was an example of the strength of labor when working collaboratively. 

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