Hotel workers union exposes ‘flip side’ of Algarve’s “record figures for tourism”

Union bosses representing hotel workers in the Algarve have exposed the ‘flip side’ of this year’s “record tourism figures”.

Low salaries and ‘conditions of precarity’ are behind the ‘good news’ touted relentlessly on a national and regional level.

In a press statement issued on Sunday, the syndicate of Algarve hotel workers called for urgent action to turn things round in its members’ favour.

There has to be a “real change in policies to revoke damaging clauses in the Labour Code, it explained.

While hoteliers have been raking in fat profits, workers have been locked into salaries that haven’t improved for a decade, and thousands of ‘apprentices’ have been “used” to do the work of qualified people who remain unemployed.

“Unfortunately, neither employers nor the government talk about the record number of hours worked, unregulated timetables, precarity, unemployment, low salaries or unpaid work that affects the Algarve tourism sector every year”, said the syndicate.

So-called apprenticeships see workers “subjected to all kinds of arbitrariness” and “used to fill jobs which employers do not have the money otherwise to pay for.”

If the sector’s data was properly analysed, it would soon become clear that workers most affected by unemployment are those in the hotel and catering sector, said the statement.

This is yet further proof that companies “resort increasingly to precarious employment conditions” so that workers remain “weak and more submissive to poor working conditions and low salaries”.

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