NYC hotel housekeepers earn big raises, panic buttons

According to a story in Wednesday’s New York Times, New York City’s largest union representing hotel workers has reached a long term contract with major hotel operators in the city which will give housekeepers and other employees big raises and will provide panic buttons for some hotel staff. Officials said that housekeepers, room service waiters and minibar attendants will receive electronic devices that will allow them to call for help.

Sources quoted in the story refused to confirm if the measure was in response to the Stauss-Khan affair of 2011, in which a housekeeper accused the then director of the IMF of sexual assault. The deal will also give hotel housekeepers and other workers health and pension benefits and raises of 29% over the life of the new seven year contract.

Union spokesperson John Turchiano provided the following details to Gadling regarding pay increases for hotel employees at most of New York’s largest hotels. The first figure represents current pay and the second represents what their pay will be by the end of the new 7 year contract.

Front desk representatives: $46,644-$60,208
Electricians- $49,140- $63,440
Bellpersons- $24,187- $31,231
Housekeepers- $46,337-$59,823

Turchiano said that “tipped” workers like bellpersons made less because it is assumed that they will receive tips. Housekeepers, however, aren’t considered “tipped” workers. According to The New York Times, per capita income in New York City was $52,375 as of 2009. Would this increased pay impact how you tip a NYC hotel housekeeper?