Latest Updates on the Coronavirus Situation

Some Union Hotels Apply for PPP Loans

May 7, 2020 2:02 PM

A few Union hotels have applied for Paycheck Protection Program loans (“PPP loans”). These loans are an incentive for businesses to keep their employees on the payroll during the Coronavirus crisis.

If your hotel receives a PPP loan and begins to pay you, the New York State Department of Labor has instructed that you should simply stop certifying for unemployment benefits for the weeks that you receive paychecks. For more tips when applying for unemployment in New York, click here.

Get Tested for COVID-19

May 6, 2020 4:00 PM

Hotel workers and other essential workers in New York State can make an appointment to be tested for COVID-19 at one of the Department of Health’s drive through or walk-in testing sites by calling the state’s COVID-19 hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or online.

Building Political Power: Complete the 2020 Census Now

May 2, 2020 12:15 PM

If you haven’t already participated in the 2020 census, we strongly encourage you to complete your census questionnaire now. The results of the census are critical in determining your community’s political representation and getting access to federal funding over the next 10 years. 

There is a great risk that because of fear among immigrant communities and because of COVID-19 (which has made it impossible for census counters to go door to door to collect incomplete surveys), that people will go uncounted in the 2020 Census. When people are uncounted it has drastic and dangerous impacts.

HTC President Peter Ward Appointed to Advisory Board on Re-Opening New York

May 1, 2020 3:45 PM

HTC President Peter Ward has been selected by Governor Cuomo to be on the New York Forward Re-Opening Advisory Board. The board is made up of 100 academic, business, community and labor leaders from across the state, who will help guide the gradual re-opening of New York state in a way that balances public health and safety and the desire to return to a new normal.

New Weekend Pharmacy Hours

April 30, 2020 6:00 PM

The Health Centers have changed the hours of the pharmacies until further notice to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Read more...

NY Daily News Calls Attention to the Harmful Impact of the Coronavirus on NYC Hotel Workers

April 29, 2020 9:00 AM

The NY Daily News highlights the heavy toll the coronavirus pandemic has had on hotel workers in New York City. Our love and prayers are with all of our members and their families during this awful time. Read the article here.

Changes in Pharmacy Hours this Weekend, April 25th and 26th

April 22, 2020 6:00 PM

Due to limited staffing, the Benefit Funds has limited the pharmacy hours this coming weekend.

Saturday, April 25, 2020:

Midtown and Queens: OPEN 9:00AM-5:00PM

Harlem and Brooklyn: CLOSED

Sunday, April 26, 2020:

All Pharmacies CLOSED

Plan ahead for the weekend closure.

NYC Department of Education Lending iPads to Students in Need

April 22, 2020 10:30 AM

To help students stay connected during this crisis and participate in remote learning while New York City public schools remain closed, the NYC Department of Education is lending iPads with internet connection to students in need.


During this difficult time when we can not come together and grieve in person and provide each other comfort, we wanted to take the space to remember and celebrate the lives of Union members who have passed. 

The True Heroes are Working People

April 17, 2020 10:15 AM

As is always the case during natural disasters, tragedies and other horrifying events, the true heroes are working people. Workers put their lives on the line and risk it all. They show courage and have unbelievable stamina. Workers always get us past it. Workers are literally, the unsung heroes.

This is expressed beautifully in this video from England. To watch, click here.

Changes in Health Center Pharmacy Hours this Weekend

April 14, 2020 6:00PM

This weekend pharmacy availability will be as follows:

Saturday, April 18, 2020:

Midtown and Queens: OPEN 9:00AM-5:00PM

Harlem and Brooklyn: CLOSED

Sunday, April 19, 2020:

All Pharmacies CLOSED.

Please plan accordingly for the weekend closure.

New York Launches New Unemployment Website

April 10, 2020 11:00 AM

The NY State Department of Labor has launched a new unemployment website, after thousands of New Yorkers reported technical issues while applying for unemployment during the last few weeks.

The website is online and during our test run, appears to be working on Safari (on a Mac) and Firefox (on a PC).

For unemployment link and Union survey, click here

New options for accessing money in your retirement account

April 8, 2020 9:00 PM

Many working people are struggling to make ends meet during the Coronavirus crisis and may need to access their retirement savings to get by.  

On March 27th, 2020, the Federal government passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or “CARES Act”. The CARES Act includes new options for individuals to withdraw money from their retirement account during the crisis. 

A Message from Union President Peter Ward

April 6, 2020 7:00 PM

"What should the union do at a time like this? And it seems as a person and the leader of the union, it’s really quite simple. One, we have to protect our membership, protect them by providing them with healthcare and security when they're not at work and create a better environment for them when they are at work during this crisis. Second thing, is to preserve the union as an institution. Despite the fact that we are going to go through an enormous economic upheaval and that the future of our industry is, to some degree, uncertain, our job is to preserve the institution so that it continues to protect hotel workers and provide that unique bubble that Hotel Trades Council members live in as employees of hotels. And then finally, contribute. Contribute to the community, contribute to solutions, contribute to things that make the problem better instead of worse.” Watch the video here...

Telephone Visits Available for Workers Covered by Industry-Wide Benefit Plan

April 3, 2020 2:51 PM

As you know, the Industry-Wide Benefit Plan canceled all non-emergent doctor appointments at the Health Centers. This safety measure was taken in order to limit healthy patients’ exposure to the novel coronavirus, and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

We are happy to announce that the Benefit Plan has set up the technology and infrastructure to schedule non-urgent primary care medical appointments as telephone visits. For any HTC represented workers, covered by the Industry-Wide Benefit plan—and your dependents— you can now schedule a telephone visit for any internal medicine, family practice, and pediatric providers. 

Counseling Services and MHAP Available Over the Phone

April 3, 2020 2:44 PM

Understandably, many people are feeling heightened anxiety and stress during this crisis. In an effort to meet the needs of those covered by the Industry-Wide Benefit Plan during this time, the Members Health Assistance Program (MHAP) is offering counseling services over the phone for existing patients as well as setting up new patients over the phone. All counseling sessions are totally confidential. To be connected with a counselor please call MHAP Monday thru Friday 9:00 AM– 5:00 PM at (212) 237-3037 or (888) 615-6427

NY State Announces It Will Backdate Unemployment Claims

April 3, 2020 8:00 AM

We have been hearing from many members about the difficulties you are having filing your unemployment claims due to the New York State Department of Labor's website and phone lines being overwhelmed. We have been monitoring this issue and want to inform you all that it has been announced that any claim you file will be backdated to the date you became unemployed. If you are eligible, you will be paid for all benefits due. 

Health Center Pharmacies Closed April 4th, 5th, 10th, and 12th (Easter Sunday)

April 2, 2020 9:00 AM

This weekend, April 4th and 5th, the Health Centers are closing all four pharmacies (Brooklyn, Harlem, Midtown, and Queens) for a thorough cleaning and sterilization. All four pharmacies will be closed again the following Friday, April 10th, for Good Friday, open that Saturday, April 11th, and closed again on Sunday, April 12th for the Easter holiday. Please plan accordingly for the weekend closure.

Union wins extended healthcare in Division A hotels

March 31, 2020 11:00 AM

On the evening of Monday, March 30th, the arbitrator ruled that his previous decision on the extension of health benefits for HTC-represented workers, does indeed apply to Division A hotels in the same way it applies to IWA shops.  As some of you may know, some Division A hotels have already recognized the fact that they need to, along with shops that fall under the IWA contract, extend health benefits for their unionized employees. The Union went back to the arbitrator with the position that the decision should cover all Division A hotels. The arbitrator agreed with the union’s position. Congratulations to HTC-represented workers at these hotels.

Resources for people who live or work in New Jersey

March 30, 2020 5:00 PM

The NJ AFL-CIO has also put together resources for working people who work or live in New Jersey. Check out their COVID-19 Toolbox here.