Category Archives: Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Employee Update: “L.A. May Hike Minimum Wage for Hotel Workers to Highest in U.S.”

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“Hotel owners and their representatives say a $15 minimum would trigger higher room rates and worker layoffs, as managements struggle to keep costs under control. The owners argue it’s unfair to take a piecemeal approach to pay rules — singling out a few industries or geographic areas.”

Labor leaders hope a proposal that would dramatically raise the minimum wage in Los Angeles for workers at large hotels to roughly $15 an hour will be a step toward pay hikes for other industries.

Members of the City Council expected to propose that large hotels pay their workers $15.37 an hour — more than double the national minimum of $7.25 an hour and push far above California’s rate of $8.

Union leaders want the increase to apply at hotels with 100 rooms or more, saying such a hike would lift housekeepers, busboys and maintenance workers out of poverty and inject much-needed cash into a  languorous local economy.

For more: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-la-minimum-wage-hike-hotel-workers-20140114,0,2611025.story#axzz2qOCybJiD

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Filed under Employee Benefits, Labor Issues, Management And Ownership, Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Legal Risks: “Kari’s Law: Murder Victim’s Family Campaigns To Change Hotel Policy”

“When we do this we want to do it right so people can feel comfortable when they have to dial 911 and they get an emergency dispatcher,” ImageGohmert told local TV station KETK. “Even adults when they’re witnessing something terribly traumatic will not be thinking about ‘what do I dial to get an outside line?’ They’d be running and dialing 911.”

“We are attempting to ensure that any person needing police, EMS or the Fire Department at any hotel or motel location may be able to dial the numbers 911 and receive emergency response,”

It was Dec. 1, 2013, and Kari Rene Hunt lie on the brink of death in a hotel room in East Texas. The eldest of her three children, a 9-year-old daughter, attempted to call 911 for help, but because she had no idea that she would have to dial 9 first to get an outside line, the call never went through and her mother succumbed to her wounds. Now, Hunt’s father Hank is out to ensure that hotels across the nation do away with systems that require dialing anything before 911 to make certain that the same scenario doesn’t happen again.

“We are attempting to ensure that any person needing police, EMS or the Fire Department at any hotel or motel location may be able to dial the numbers 911 and receive emergency response,” Hank said in a petition on Change.org. “In a panic, any underage child — or for that matter, anyone in an emergency situation — should be able to depend on dialing 911 from any phone in the United States and receiving assistance.”

For more: http://www.ibtimes.com/karis-law-murder-victims-family-campaigns-change-hotel-policy-1536166

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Filed under Guest Issues, Liability, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Legal Risks: “Costa Mesa to Slap Hotels With Fines For Too Many Police Calls”

“…Under the ordinance approved Tuesday, motels and hotels could incur fines of hundreds of dollars if they generate above an average 0.4 calls per room per month for recurring “nuisance activities.” Those activities were defined as including persistent noise, gang-related crime,Image illegal use of a firearm, disturbing the peace, illegal use or sale of fireworks, drug possession or sale, underage drinking and loud parties. Violent felonies are also covered…”

Costa Mesa hotels will have to pay a fine if they attract an “excessive” amount of police attention under a new law aimed at properties run by what one City Council member referred to as “slumlords.”

Under the ordinance approved Tuesday, motels and hotels could incur fines of hundreds of dollars if they generate above an average 0.4 calls per room per month for recurring “nuisance activities.” Those activities were defined as including persistent noise, gang-related crime, illegal use of a firearm, disturbing the peace, illegal use or sale of fireworks, drug possession or sale, underage drinking and loud parties. Violent felonies are also covered.

Reporting domestic violence and summoning fire or ambulance services, however, are not considered nuisance activities under the ordinance, the Daily Pilot reported.

For more: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-costa-mesa-hotels-fines-police-calls-20140109,0,1005916.story#axzz2q0jOZxiH

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Filed under Crime, Guest Issues, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Legal Risks: California Restaurant Franchisee Settles EEOC “Disability Discrimination Lawsuit” For $100,000; Former Floor Supervisor With “Intellectual Disability” Demoted To Janitorial Position

“…The EEOC contends that once Alia took over,  Alia management demoted Morgan to a janitorial position, cut his hours and reduced  his hourly EEOCwages, thereby forcing him to find other employment and resign by  June 2009.   The EEOC’s lawsuit argued  that Alia Corporation thus engaged in disability discrimination that violated  the Americans with Disabilities Act  (ADA)…”

Alia Corporation, a franchisee  with over 20 fast-food chain restaurants throughout Central California, agreed  to pay $100,000 to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S.  Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced  today.

The EEOC originally filed suit against the Merced,  Calif.-based company in 2011 on behalf of Derrick Morgan, a former floor  supervisor with an intellectual disability (EEOC v. Alia Corporation, Case  No. 1:11-cv-01549-LJO-BAM, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of  California).  Morgan was known to be a good employee and  promoted by previous management from crew member to super­visor in 2008.

As  part of the settlement announced today, the parties entered into a three-year  consent decree requiring Alia to hire an equal employment opportunity (EEO) monitor  to create anti-discrimination policies and procedures; a complaint process and  impartial investigations; a centralized tracking system for discrimination  complaints; a system to hold employees accountable for discrimination; and,  annual live disability discrimination training for all management and human  resources employees.  The $100,000 in  monetary relief shall be paid entirely to Morgan.  The EEOC will monitor compliance with the agreement.

“Employers cannot allow biases and stereotypes to factor  into employment decisions,” said Anna Y. Park, regional attorney for the EEOC’s  Los Angeles District Office, which includes Fresno in its jurisdiction.  “The EEOC commends Alia Corporation for  today’s settlement, as it marks a new path for Alia — one which includes equal  employment opportunity for all of their employees, regardless of disabilities.”

Melissa  Barrios, director of the EEOC’s Fresno Local Office, said, “Disability discrimination  charges are on the rise in California, comprising 30% of all charges  filed.  Workers who are unjustly  penalized due to their disabilities have protections under federal law, and the  EEOC is here to help.”

For more:  http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/4-18-13.cfm

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Filed under Employment Practices Liability, Insurance, Labor Issues, Liability, Management And Ownership, Training, Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Property Risks: Texas Restaurant “Natural Gas Fire” Caused By Faulty Water Heater; Damage Estimated At $15,000

“…When firefighters got to the scene, the cook there told them that he heard the hot water heater pop and Restaurant Firethat’s when they saw the fire… Crews immediately evacuated the restaurant and the surrounding businesses, but they also had to cut the gas off before they could put out the fire, which was located in the restaurant’s mechanical room…”

Fire officials said a hot water heater is to blame for a natural gas fire at a Chinese restaurant on the city’s northwest side. The fire broke out at about 4:18 p.m. Sunday afternoon at the Hunan Chinese Restaurant.

Fire officials said this natural gas fire caused about $15,000 worth of damage.

Nobody was hurt in the fire and the surrounding businesses opened back up later that Sunday.

For more:  http://www.ksat.com/news/Officials-Water-heater-causes-fire-at-Chinese-restaurant/-/478452/18116632/-/dt62eg/-/index.html

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Filed under Fire, Insurance, Maintenance, Risk Management, Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Theft Risks: Wisconsin Restaurant Employee Arrested For “Cashing Two Unauthorized Businsess Checks” In His Name

“…the owner of Espana Restaurant and Bar discovered Johnson had cashed two unauthorized checks from the business in his name for $160 and $350…the checks were kept in a locked desk drawer in the basement of the business and were pre-signed to pay vendors…”

A 37-year-old Wauwatosa man is facing charges after he allegedly stole two checks from his employer and then cashed them in his name. Dana James Johnson was charged Thursday in Milwaukee County Circuit Court with one count of theft. If convicted, he faces up to nine months in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Officers then went to Community Financial, 4525 W. North Ave., where they found security video footage of Johnson coming into the bank and cashing the checks.

For more:  http://wauwatosa.patch.com/articles/tosa-man-charged-with-stealing-checks-from-a-milwaukee-restaurant

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Filed under Crime, Labor Issues, Liability, Management And Ownership, Theft, Uncategorized

Hospitality Industry Employee Safety And Wage Issues: Hotel Management Should Expect 2011 OSHA Regulations To Require A Written “Injury And Illness Protection Progam” And Dept. Of Labor (DOL) Rule Requiring Full Disclosure On “Worker’s Pay Computation”

 

  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is developing a regulation mandating that employers have a written health and safety program, referred to as an Injury and Illness Protection Program or “I2P2.”
  • This rule would give an OSHA investigator the authority to find that an injury should have been avoided even if it was not regulated under a specific standard.
  • OSHA will also publish a regulation that will require employers to analyze every employee injury to determine if it is a work-related recordable musculoskeletal injury.
  • This regulation would set the stage for OSHA to revive its controversial ergonomics standard.

 

  • The Wage and Hour Division at DOL has a highly anticipated rule that would greatly expand recordkeeping requirements under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
  • It would require employers to disclose how a worker’s pay is computed and complete a written “classification analysis” for each worker who is exempt or outside of the coverage of the FLSA.

For more:   http://www.worldtrademag.com/Articles/Column/BNP_GUID_9-5-2006_A_10000000000000932009

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Filed under Health, Injuries, Labor Issues, Legislation, Liability, Risk Management, Training, Uncategorized