Labor and employment relations issues are disrupting the hospitality industry. Depending on your perspective, the recent National Labor Relations Board Browning Ferris Industries (BFI) decision either alters or simply reinstates the definition of “employer” in regard to employees employed by one entity and leased to another. Regardless of which side you are on, the new decision will result in “putative” employers being more likely to be the “employer” of leased employees. The next NLRB decision on that topic will focus on franchisors’ and franchisees’ employees. Some argue that BFI and the future franchise decisions, regardless of the outcome, will fundamentally change business models and will soon apply to Fair Labor Standards cases and Equal Employment Opportunity cases. Others contend that the potential effects are overstated and there will be no real change. Everyone agrees, however, that these cases need to be monitored, the effects analyzed, and there needs to be dialogue and research. With research soon to be released, other projects underway, and a major roundtable scheduled for April, CIHLER aims to be the intellectual home of this debate.
As is to be expected, CIHLER will be busy with research, conferences, and roundtables next year. We will have a major prese
nce at ALIS Law in Los Angeles in January, our members will dominate the program at the 10th Annual HR in Hospitality Conference in Scottsdale in March, and will be hosting roundtables in Boca Raton, Ithaca, LA, Dallas, Chicago, and NYC. Our members continue to provide us with updates on the latest issues which can be found on our web site and support us on our projects. We also look forward to publishing at least two student papers this spring.
I would be remiss if I did not take a moment to acknowledge the retirement of one of our founding members, greatest contributors and, most importantly, our best of friends – Alan Momeyer. Alan will be retiring from Loews Corporation in the next few months. There is not sufficient room here to provide even a sampling of Alan’s accomplishments and the accolades he has received. Suffice to say that in the last 35 years no person has done more for human resources in hospitality than Alan. The good news is that when he is not traveling to exotic locations or doing other fun and interesting things, Alan will continue to work with us as CIHLER. As long as I am director, Alan will always have a seat at every and any CIHLER table. Congratulations, Alan!
John and Melissa Ceriale Professor of Hospitality Human Resources Academic Director of the Cornell Institute for Hospitality Labor and Employment Relations and Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow