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AH&LA Supports Court Action to Protect Small Business Hoteliers in Seattle

Thursday, August 14, 2014
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Washington, D.C. - The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), the sole national association representing all segments of the 1.8 million-employee lodging industry, filed an amicus brief in support of the International Franchise Association’s (IFA) motion for a preliminary injunction discriminating against franchisees under the city of Seattle’s new minimum wage ordinance. The amicus, which includes the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Restaurant Association, the Home Care Association of America, the Asian American Hotel Owners Association and the Washington Retail Federation, highlights the discriminatory treatment of franchisees under the wage ordinance in violation of the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce and Equal Protection Clauses.

“The Seattle wage ordinance is shortsighted and discriminatory against small businesses. It’s ridiculous to think that independently owned mom-and-pop hotels - making up the majority of our industry – would be considered large employers simply because of their affiliation with national chains,” said Vanessa Sinders, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs. “AH&LA strongly supports the IFA’s motion for a preliminary injunction – and hopes that the U.S. District Court in the Western District of Washington sees fit to overturn this harmful law. We are an industry comprised of many franchisees, and we hope the final outcome protects the small business status of many of our Seattle hoteliers.”

Serving the hospitality industry for more than a century, the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) is the sole national association representing all segments of the 1.8 million-employee U.S. lodging industry, including hotel owners, REITs, chains, franchisees, management companies, independent properties, state hotel associations, and industry suppliers. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AH&LA provides focused advocacy, communications support, and educational resources for an industry generating $163 billion in annual sales from 4.9 million guestrooms.
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