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    Posted June 21, 2012 by
    Honolulu, Hawaii
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    Protest of the Hotel Workers in Honolulu, Hawaii, June 20, 2012


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     PuakeaJutka captured these photos and video of hotel workers protesting in front of Ilikai Hotel on June 20."You could feel the incredible energy rippling through the crowd it was all around us and the sounds of the protest echoed through the streets of Waikiki like a huge crashing wave," she says. Adding that the protestors were very peaceful, but full of enthusiasm. "You could feel that they really stand up for their cause with their heart and soul. The tourist industry is a pillar of our economy and the Hotel workers are vital parts of it. So when they are hurt or are treated unjustly, we all will hurt."
    - Anika3, CNN iReport producer

    Today the Hotel workers of the Union Local 5 voiced their concern on the streets of Waikiki and at the front of the legendary Ilikai Hotel second time this year. But this protest is just a precursor of a much larger demonstration which is planned  in Honolulu in July 2012. Today demonstration was a very peaceful one, but it communicated a powerful message to the management of the Hotels which are involved.


    The hotel business is a major industry in Hawaii and its very survival is not just a local but also a national interest as well. The tourist industry is one of the major income for our beautiful Islands. Rght after the earthquake in Japan last year, Hawaii has seen a significant decline in its number of visitors, which has seriously affected all sectors of the Hawaiian economy. Not only is Hawaii the birthplace of President Obama, but it is also one of the most important military bases on the Globe, so its economical well-being is a very important national issue. Local 5 is one of the oldest Unions in Hawaii and it is of great importance to the hotel employees . The union members not just voiced their disappointment about the management, but they also expressed their worries about the future of the tourist industry. This issue really affects the relationship between management and hotel employees, which could lead to further actions. I had the opportunity to speak with Cade Watanabe, a spokesman for UNITE HERE Local 5, who told me that this has becomes an issue  with the National Labor Relations Board. Also one of the organizer, Audrey Gecain, a Modern Hotel worker was so kind to speak to me as well Big Mahalo for the so insightful inteviews. I also wish that this important issue will be solved very soon and in the best interest of all who are involved. Thank You: PuakeaJutka


    Video and photos by Jutka T. Emoke Barabas

    The video is looks better in a small screen mode, I had to compress a large video file to able to upload. Thank You.

    The Ilikai Hotel is the place where the first Hawaii Five – 0, the world wide known and very successful TV series from Hawaii had its opening scene with Jack Lord.

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