Paving the Way: Workforce Issues Are a Top Priority for AHLA

Brian Crawford, executive vice president of government affairs at AHLA, shares five initiatives that AHLA and the hotel industry are supporting to advance the cause of workforce safety and development.

Hospitality workforce

Hospitality is a business centered around people taking care of people, including its own. From investing in innovative, proactive workforce development programs to its commitment to continuous improvement in hotel safety and security, the hotel industry strives to create positive work environments where employees can grow and thrive.

Building on the great work of its member companies and partner state associations, the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) has made workforce issues a top priority. Below details five initiatives that AHLA and the hotel industry at large are supporting to advance the cause of workforce safety and development.

AHLA’s Safety Summit 

Hotel industry leaders convened in Washington earlier this month for AHLA’s annual Safety Summit, where they discussed the industry’s long-standing commitment to workplace safety and shared best practices and protocols. The event furthered the industry’s commitment to AHLA’s 5-Star Promise, a pledge to provide hotel employees across the U.S. with employee safety devices (ESDs) and commit to policies, trainings, and resources aimed at enhancing hotel safety, including preventing and responding to sexual harassment and assault. Attendees also heard from experts at Delta Airlines and Uber about how their companies are adapting their own policies and protocols to improve employee and customer safety.

Staff Alert Buyer’s Guide

As part of the 5-Star Promise, AHLA has partnered with Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) to establish a comprehensive Staff Alert Device Buyer’s Guide. Created to meet the unique needs of hotels nationwide, the Buyer’s Guide will help properties identify and establish the context required to complete an RFP or RFI. This process was designed to support hotels in their efforts to advance the safety and security of employees and guests. AHLA members can download a copy of the Buyer’s Guide on the organization’s website.

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Rosanna Maietta, executive vice president of communications at AHLA and president of the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation (AHLEF), recently joined leaders from a diverse group of industries for a roundtable discussion at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to share strategies they have implemented to improve workplace culture and reduce harassment. AHLA’s presence at the event underscored its leadership and proactive commitment to enhancing workplace safety and security, as illustrated through the 5-Star Promise.

ForWard: Women Advancing Hospitality 

This week, women from across the hotel industry gathered in Chicago for ForWard: Women Advancing Hospitality, AHLA’s second annual conference designed to further the conversation of diversity and inclusion in the workplace through networking, strategizing, and sharing collective knowledge. AHLA is excited to highlight and champion the next generation of our industry’s leaders and keep women moving forward.

Human Trafficking Prevention Strategy

Building on the hotel industry’s longstanding efforts to raise awareness of human trafficking and provide hotel operators with the tools and resources to identify and report these crimes, AHLA is continuing to lead the charge advocating against human trafficking. This proactive effort between our industry and engaged partners, such as Polaris, ECPAT-USA, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Blue Campaign, is the next step to help our industry raise awareness of human trafficking and empower our employees to help stop it.

Protecting and investing in employees is critical to the hotel industry. AHLA is committed to working with its member companies and partner state associations to advance the safety, security, and development of its devoted workforce.

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Brian Crawford is the executive vice president of government affairs at AHLA.