The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), the sole national association representing all segments of the 1.8 million-employee lodging industry, issued the following statement on today's filing of a lawsuit by the International Franchise Association (IFA) challenging the franchise provisions of the recently-enacted wage increase in the City of Seattle:
"The wage increase in Seattle contains a very troubling anti-franchise provision not previously utilized anywhere else in the country, and small hotels and businesses will suffer the brunt of the consequences as a result," said Katherine Lugar, AH&LA president/CEO. "It's absurd to think that the mom-and-pop hotels making up the vast majority of our industry would be considered large employers under Seattle's new provisions, simply because of their affiliation with national chains. AH&LA strongly supports the efforts of the International Franchise Association to file a legal challenge to overturn the franchisee provision in the city's minimum wage ordinance. 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. Seattle – and any other city taking steps to adopt extreme wage mandates - will soon find that these proposals only serve to harm Main Street businesses, deny opportunities for men and women seeking to climb the ladder of opportunity and success, undermine employer-provided health benefits, and hurt their local travel and tourism industry."
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 $155.5 billion in annual sales from 4.9 million guestrooms.
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