Dodgers players and employees are the latest to cross hotel picket lines in Boston

Hotel workers have been striking for nearly a month in a pursuit of increased rights and protections.

While in Boston for the ALDS at the beginning of October, Yankees players crossed a picket line while staying at the Ritz-Carlton Boston. As union members themselves, it was an incredibly bad look for the team at the time. Now, the Dodgers have done the same thing while in Boston in advance of Game 1 of the World Series against the Red Sox on Tuesday.

Hotel workers at various hotels (including the Aloft Boston Seaport District, the Element Boston Seaport District, the Ritz-Carlton Boston, the Sheraton Boston, the W Hotel Boston, the Westin Boston Waterfront, and Westin Copley Place) have been on strike since October 3rd in an effort to ensure stable hours, job stability, protections against the rise of automation, and updated sexual harassment protocols.

At the time of the Yankees ignoring the strike, it had just begun. So you could maybe forgive them for not being able to change their plans at the last minute and find space at another hotel in Boston if they didn’t have a heads up about the strike.

But the strike has been ongoing for weeks now and the Dodgers knew that if they advanced past the NLCS they’d be going to Boston for multiple days before arriving in the city. This wasn’t a last-minute booking in the same way as the Yankees were post-Wild Card Game win. Furthermore, the strike has now spread to eight other cities (such as Detroit, Honolulu, Maui, Oakland, San Francisco, San Diego, and San Jose), so the strike is now even more high-profile across the country and the team would be even more hard-pressed to claim they knew nothing about it before first making their booking in Massachusetts.

UNITE HERE Local 26, the union organizing the strike in Boston, attempted to help the NL World Series team (whether the Dodgers or Brewers) find lodging at one of the socially responsible union hotels in Boston in advance of the series but there weren’t enough suites to fit all the players — as required in player contracts — so management stuck with their usual booking at the Ritz. Team employees are reportedly staying at the Sheraton, another hotel where employees are on strike.

The Sheraton is the Astros’ usual hotel while in Boston, but SB Nation learned that they found another hotel not currently involved in the strike when visiting for the ALCS. So it is possible to do so in the postseason even with a tight timeline and unsure travel plans.

UNITE HERE President Brian Lang tells SB Nation of the situation,

The bottom line is workers out there who are on their third week of striking, who live paycheck to paycheck, who are fighting for a livable income so one job would be enough. You’ve got millionaire ball players who would rather sleep in a hotel, even if it’s struck, because it has suites. I personally think that Jackie Robinson is rolling over in his grave right now. He’s an icon who that organization hails as a hero and they act completely differently than he would in this situation.

At the time of the Yankees’ stay, the MLBPA gave a statement to SB Nation saying,

From what we understand, these workers have been trying to negotiate a fair contract for more than six months. They deserve to be heard and deserve our support.

We’ve reached out for comment from MLBPA about the Dodgers crossing the same picket three weeks later and will update this post accordingly.