UNITE HERE Local 1 represents more than 15,000 hospitality workers in the Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana. Local 1 members are the heart of Chicago’s hospitality industry, working in area hotels, Chicago’s major airports, restaurants, school cafeterias, stadiums, convention centers like McCormick Place and Navy Pier, and casinos in Northwest Indiana. We are a union of housekeepers, lunchroom attendants, cooks, bartenders, bellmen, servers, and dishwashers. Local 1 is an affiliate of UNITE HERE, which represents approximately 300,000 hotel, food service, and gaming workers throughout the United States and Canada. UNITE HERE is among the fastest growing unions in the nation.
Raising the Standard in Chicago
Chicago’s hospitality workers are at the core of the city’s economy. In 2012, according to the Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau, Chicago’s tourism industry represented $12 billion in direct spending, and hotel occupancy grew for a third consecutive year.
In the last decade, members of UNITE HERE Local 1 have transformed low-wage, service-sector jobs into safe, family-sustaining jobs. Our union has dramatically raised the standard for hotel work in Chicago, with housekeeper wages rising from $8.83 an hour in 2002 to $18.04 an hour today. We have fought hard for and won a fair and humane workload, job security, decent pensions, affordable healthcare, and respect in the workplace.
UNITE HERE Local 1 weathered the recession and came out stronger. As the city of Chicago grows, our union has joined together to improve living standards and working conditions for all hospitality workers throughout Chicagoland.
UNITE HERE Local 1 has made headlines in recent years with high profile campaigns at the Congress Hotel, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago’s airports and Hyatt Hotels – often flooding Chicago’s streets with red.