Unite Here Local 23 Protests Private Prisons

Members of Unite Here Local 23, representing workers at the Convention Center, protest the proposed Omni hotel project because the “project manager” is involved in the private prison industry.

Members of Unite Here Local 23, a union representing 1,700 hospitality workers in New Orleans protest the Omni hotel project which is proposed to be built south of the main hall of the Convention Center. The proposed project would be managed by the Baton Rouge-based Provident Resources Group, a company with a record of ownership in private prisons.

Gabby Bolden-Shaw, vice president of the Unite Here Local 23 explained union members’ opposition to the project: “It feels like a slap in the face to know this board might work with an organization that has a history of acquiring, financing, owning, leasing and contracting for the operation of correctional facilities,” said Bolden-Shaw. “New Orleans has long had one of the highest incarceration rates per capita among U.S. cities (and) this disproportionately impacts communities of color and working class families.”

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