UNITEHERE Local 11 leader Kurt Petersen is calling on hotels in Los Angeles to raise the wages of staff before the city hosts the FIFA World Cup and the 2028 Olympics ©UNITE HERE Local 11

Hotel workers in Los Angeles are being urged to strike this summer to improve working conditions before the city hosts the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games, as well as hosting matches as part of the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

The UNITE HERE Local 11 Union represents many who work in the sector in Los Angeles and is calling for a strike vote to take place on June 8 in a bid to convince hotel operators to increase wages.

"The city is preparing to welcome millions of guests for the 2026 World Cup and the 2028 Olympics," a UNITE HERE Local 11 statement said.

"Local 11 intends to ensure that the residents of Los Angeles who put their sweat and tears into maintaining the city’s tourism industry are provided with wages that allow them to secure housing."

The Union claims many workers have been forced to move out of the city and face a long commute to work.

"It’s crucial to ensure workers are fairly compensated and can afford housing," UNITE HERE Local 11 co-President Kurt Petersen told the Los Angeles Times.

He predicted that more than 20,000 tourism workers in Southern California could be affected by the action and that it could spread to food companies and those providing facilities at airports and sports venues.

Petersen has accused many of the hotel companies of "going silent" since negotiations on increases in pay began in April.

He insists that many workers have been forced to move out of the city and face a long commute to work.

"When half of our members have been forced to move or will have to move while the tourism industry boasts record profits, something is very wrong with the system," Petersen added.

"We are prepared to do whatever it takes to get workers wages that can secure local housing."

Hyatt Hotels Labour Relations vice-president Michael D'Angelo insists that the hotels are committed to negotiations.

"Hyatt has just commenced negotiations along with other Los Angeles and Orange County hotels and is committed to bargaining in good faith," D’Angelo said.

"We remain optimistic that a mutually beneficial agreement can be reached without a strike." 

In April Los Angeles City councillors called for the introduction of a minimum hourly wage of $30 (£24/€27) to be implemented by LA 2028.