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Why I caravaned to the state capitol today

September 22, 2020

Today, I caravaned with hundreds of workers from across the state to deliver a letter urging Governor Gavin Newsom to sign AB 3216, which would protect the jobs of hotel and service workers through rights of recall and retention.

Will you join us in calling on Governor Newsom to support job security for hundreds of thousands of workers like me who were laid off due to COVID-19?

I’m Miguel de la Mora, and I’ve worked at the Fairmont San Jose hotel since 1990. I have three children. Two are still in school and my oldest has a family of her own. By building my career at the Fairmont, I have been able to provide stability for my family and a good life for my children. Having health benefits all these years meant that I could make sure my kids were healthy and go the doctor when they needed. And through thirty years of hard work and saving, a few years ago we were finally able to buy a house. 

I never imagined losing my job to a pandemic. But COVID-19 hit our communities and industry hard, and in March I received a layoff letter. My family is suffering. We are surviving collecting unemployment, but it doesn’t come close to what I was earning just 7 months ago. I don’t know how my family will make it if I can’t return to my career in the hospitality industry. Unfortunately, the hospitality industry may not recover and our jobs may not come back until well into 2021.

That’s why I’m participating in the Caravan to Sacramento with my coworkers to urge Governor Newsom to sign AB 3216 — a bill that would protect hundreds of thousands of service workers with the “right to recall.” If passed, it would mean that employers like the Fairmont Hotel are required to offer jobs first to existing, longtime workers when workplaces reopen and business comes back.

I am a professional, and it’s workers like me who deliver high class service and keep our industries running. Our industry needs longtime workers who know how to reopen safely and successfully. Knowing that I will have a good job to return to is so import for the stability of my family. 

AB 3216 will help to ensure that as California recovers, working families like mine are not left behind. 

Please support workers like me in winning our jobs back.

In solidarity,

Banquet Server at Fairmont San Jose
Member of UNITE HERE Local 19