HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - One of the largest travel conventions arrives in Waikiki this week in the middle of a hotel workers strike.
The American Dental Association’s annual convention is expected to attract 15,000 attendees and their families. The hotel worker’s union is urging conventioneers to avoid Marriott hotels.
“We’re contacting people to let them know ... that there is a labor dispute and if you can go to another hotel that does not have a strike," said Gemma Watson, president of UNITE HERE Local 5.
While most of the events will be held at the Hawaii Convention Center, many of the people attending the convention have booked rooms at Marriott hotels.
One of the events, a charity fundraiser for children, will be held Saturday night at the Waikiki Sheraton. The union said it will be vocal and visible then.
The Hawaii Dental Association issued this statement today:
"We are monitoring the strike situation and moving forward with the event in the expectation that striking employees will understand and respect that this is a charitable event for the benefit of children,”said Kim Nguyen, the HDA’s executive director.
Since Local 5′s 2,700 hotel workers went on strike last week, many union groups have changed hotel plans to avoid the picket lines.
The hotel worker’s union said it’s also warned private groups planning events to do the same.
The dentist convention is expected to bring people from 46 countries who will spend nearly $76 million dollars over the next few days.