In a recent survey commissioned by the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) and carried out by Public Opinion Strategies, a vast majority of Los Angeles residents believe that homelessness in the city is either a crisis or a significant problem. However, 86% oppose prioritizing the use of hotels as shelters for the homeless.
This poll comes ahead of a March 2024 ballot, where LA residents will decide whether local hotels should be mandated to provide housing for the homeless alongside regular paying guests. The initiative, proposed by Unite Here – a labor union representing LA hotel workers, was unanimously rejected by the city council last year.
According to the survey, many believe that such a move would unfairly burden hotel staff (81%), significantly harm the city’s tourism sector (70%), and jeopardize hotel staff’s safety (69%). Unite Here’s stance on the issue has been a contentious point in their negotiations with LA hotels.
Among other findings, the survey revealed:
- 71% believe the city can’t afford to adopt a policy allowing the homeless to check into any hotel with available rooms, potentially sharing facilities with paying guests.
- 66% opine that such a housing system would lead to a sharp decline in hotel tax revenues, impacting city services like public safety and education.
- 59% would think twice before visiting a city with such a policy in place.
AHLA’s President & CEO, Chip Rogers, criticized Unite Here’s stance, stating that it threatens both hotel guests and workers’ safety, could severely damage the city’s tourism industry, and may lead to significant job losses. He urged the union to reconsider its position.
For further discussions on this topic, AHLA representatives are available for interviews through their official communication channel.
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