Workers United Upstate NY & VT: We Welcome Immigrants to Western & Upstate NY

As the union representing hotel workers in Western and Upstate NY, we believe in hospitality. We stand firmly against the actions of the county legislatures and sheriffs declaring and enforcing states of emergencies regarding the possible arrival of immigrants and asylum seekers into our region, actions which would levy enormous fines against hotels that house these newcomers.

These declarations and planned actions are dehumanizing and racist. They are also a clear attempt to pit groups of workers against each other. We know that an injury to one is an injury to all, and that hostility toward immigrants is always accompanied by hostility toward workers and toward greater freedom for all people. El pueblo unido jamás será vencido.

“Our members in hotels across the state work hard every day to create a welcoming environment for everyone coming to our region,” said Gary Bonadonna, the leader of Workers United in Upstate NY & VT. “The labor movement has always been a movement of immigrants. Our union was founded by people who came to this country fleeing persecution and seeking economic opportunity. We welcome new arrivals to our nation, our region, and our union.”

We call on the county legislatures, elected officials, and law enforcement to reverse their decisions, rescind the states of emergency and other anti-immigrant policies, ensure that every action is taken to create a welcoming community, and celebrate rather than punish the hotels that open their doors to immigrants in need of shelter.