$173,000 in back pay for St. Regis butlers

June 7, 2011

Twenty-two butlers in the housekeeping department at the St. Regis recently received sizable checks from their hotel in settlement of a grievance the union filed on their behalf. St. Regis butlers respond to guest requests around the clock. The hotel's web site emphasizes this aspect of its "exceptional personal service," and notes that its "iconic butler service" is there to insure that "no request is too small or unattainable to fulfill at any hour."

To provide this exceptional level of service, the butlers are subject to being paged at any time during their shifts. Previously, that had included during their daily meal break as well. The union filed a grievance seeking to have them compensated for lost wages for their breaks, at overtime rates when applicable, over a two-year period. On the same day the arbitration hearing before the Impartial Chairperson was to begin, the hotel entered into the voluntary settlement agreement with the union. Shortly thereafter, the hotel issued checks to the butlers in full satisfaction of the $173,000 payout the settlement required.

Over the years, the St. Regis has been a frequent recipient of the hospitality industry's most coveted awards. Our union's members provide the distinguished service that results in the hotel being consistently recognized as one of the finest anywhere.

Photos courtesy of Sergio Calleja and Sarah Ackerman