Brighton Hospitality Workers

Hospitality campaign takes on cafe in Hove

On Saturday, the 13th of December, the first picket against Caffe Bar Italia took place. Around 11 in the morning, a group of 10 SolFed members met in George Street (Hove) and after trying unsuccessfully to reach an agreement with the owner, started the picket outside the business.

This conflict started a few weeks ago when a worker contacted SolFed's Brighton Hospitality Workers because she had not been paid the amount of £1,264. Apart from the holiday pay that she was owed, her contract stipulated a minimum number of hours which were not offered to her. A demand letter was sent with the boss requested to respond. The boss refused to pay and insisted that he didn't have to pay her for “the hours she didn't work”; nevertheless, the law says that a worker should work at least the minimum hours his contract says.

Brighton Hospitality Workers: Carry on Picketing!

This summer, Brighton Hospitality Workers (BHW) took on one of the most uncompromising bosses we have faced. The owner (who shall henceforth be referred to as ‘V’) of a well-known local café had hired a worker with an agreement to pay her £6ph but when it came to payday, he only coughed up what amounted to £5ph and refused to pay her holiday pay. After V refused to pay her the remainder, the worker approached BHW, who agreed to support her in getting back her owed wages.

During the initial meeting with V, BHW delivered a letter outlining reasons for the conflict and the demands of the worker. The worker herself was too scared to face V. V was verbally and physically abusive, and refused to accept the letter (we left it on the premises anyway).

SolFed chalks up another wages win with Brighton Hospitality Workers

Victory in wages dispute! Following a prolonged campaign against a high-profile Brighton grocer, a former cashier worker & BHW member has received £1,250 in owed wages and unpaid holiday entitlement. The worker, who was on a zero-hours contract, was sacked without notice following 3 weeks when the bosses refused to give her any hours. She was also owed holiday pay from the previous & current holiday year for leave she was prevented from taking.

Transnational Companies Cave Into Wages Demands Following Picket

Another victory for Brighton Hospitality Workers and for direct action! In February, two members of Brighton Hospitality Workers (BHW) brought unpaid holiday entitlement issues to the group, incurred while both had worked at the Brighton premisis of a transnational hotel chain. The hotel's housekeeping staff were contracted to work there by the UK operation of an international recruitment exploiter with a reputation for withholding pay, particularly after contracts had been terminated. One worker was owed £286 in holiday pay for leave she was prevented from taking, despite repeated requests to her manager, as well as 2 days' outstanding sick pay. The second worker was owed £180 in holiday pay, also for leave she was prevented from taking, again despite repeated requests – in December her boss told her she 'had lost' her right to take paid leave.

Transnational companies give in to demands following hotel picket

On Saturday March 22nd members of Brighton SolFed and Brighton Hospitality Workers (BHW) staged a well-attended picket of a local Travelodge hotel. This was an opening action in support of two of the hotel's former workers - both members of BHW - who were demanding full payment of owed holiday entitlement for annual leave they were prevented from taking. One of the workers had already had owed wages paid in full, following a demand letter from SolFed & BHW to the agency that held the staff contract at Travelodge. The agency - Jani-King GB - were an international recruitment exploiter based in the US with an appalling record of non-payment of wages & holiday pay.

Hospitality Workers Picketing Over Unpaid Annual Leave

On Saturday 22nd March members of the Brighton Hospitality Workers and Brighton Solidarity Federation picketted a prominent Brighton hotel over unpaid overtime owed to members of staff.

The hotel has since promised to ensure the overtime owed is fully paid. We are therefore not currently naming the hotel, although we intend to escalate our campaign should they fail to pay the workers involved.