WEST HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA) — West Hollywood hot spot Chateau Marmont has reportedly terminated nearly all staff amid coronavirus shutdowns.
According to Local 11, the labor union that represents Southern California hospitality workers, hotel management notified employees on March 19 that they were being terminated due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, effective the following day.
The union reported that the hotel fired nearly its entire workforce.
Workers told the union they were not offered severance money or continuing health insurance coverage, nor were they told they would return when the crisis subsides.
"In the middle of this pandemic, I'm now unemployed and will soon lose health insurance for my entire family," Walter Almendarez, one of the employees fired, told the union. "I've worked for the Chateau Marmont for nearly 23 years. It's completely unjust for the hotel to fire me and my coworkers without anything to keep us on our feet."
According to worker reports, on March 17, hotel management emailed hourly employees saying while they would temporarily not be scheduled for any hours, they were still active employees of the hotel and could continue to receive health insurance coverage by paying their share of the premium.
"It was incredibly devastating to have gone from full time, to temporarily losing my hours but still being eligible for health insurance, to terminated with no health insurance in the midst of a pandemic," said former employee Michael Racanelli to the union. "It's absolutely shameful to do this to employees who have given so much of their lives to make a profit for the owner of the hotel, who is already worth hundreds of millions of dollars."
Chateau Marmont has long been associated with the fame and glamour of the many Hollywood stars who frequent the hotel.
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