Guests were met by protesters when a city holiday dinner was held at the Hilton in December.
Employees at the Hilton Glendale have been at odds with their management, Eagle Hospitality Properties Trust, for about a year and have initiated a boycott against the hotel.
The boycott stems from employee efforts to join with Unite Here — a local union that represents hotel employees and other groups — to achieve better wages and health benefits.
Hilton bartender Angela Reid addressed the City Council, acting as the Redevelopment Agency, Tuesday requesting they not use the hotel to host their function.
"We just ask for your respect for the workers," she said.
"Whatever you can do for us by moving any event, any parties, for us, we would really appreciate that because the hotel is officially under a boycott."
Glendale resident Armond Aghakhanian also spoke to the council, asking them to consider how it would reflect on the city to have protesters at the event.
"I know for some investors it will be very uncomfortable to come to a location where you have people picketing for livable wages," he said.
Hilton Glendale General Manager Linda Norman said this venue change due to the boycott is not improving matters for the employees.
"Its unfortunate if the [venue] movement was a result of Unite Here's call for a consumer boycott," she said.
The new venue for the event has yet to be decided, but possible options discussed at the meeting included the Oakmont Country Club, the Alex Theatre or the Civic Center.
At the event, investors will hear about current Glendale projects. City officials will also create a promotional DVD giving information about the city.
"We would like to hold an event in Glendale to expose ourselves to the corporate community, to investment, to developers that would want to come and invest in Glendale," Development Services Director Philip Lanzafame said at the meeting.
What do you think of the Redevelopment Agency's decision not to hold its conference at the Hilton Glendale due to that hotel's ongoing labor dispute? E-mail email@example.com or write to News-Press and Leader Community Forum, 111 W. Wilson Ave. Suite 200, Glendale, CA 91203. Please include your name and tell us your hometown and phone number for verification purposes only.
ROBERT S. HONG covers public safety and the courts. He may be reached at (818) 637-3235 or by e-mail at robert.honglatimes.com.<252>