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Business Representative Lori Condinus Explains the Law

Before Lori Condinus became a Council 36 Business Representative, she was working at the Anaheim Hilton Hotel as a PBX operator, a position that is responsible for answering, routing, and screening all telephone calls. “As you can tell, I have quite a feisty personality,” she explains, “and it could get me into trouble from time to time.” When her outspoken nature landed her in hot water with management, Lori’s union successfully fought to save her job—and soon after, Lori returned the favor by becoming a shop steward for Unite Here 11.

Thirty years later after working her way up to chief shop steward and now Business Representative, Lori ensures that all the members of the locals within Council 36 are fairly represented—over the last year, she played a crucial role in the negotiations between 3090 and the City of Los Angeles. She regularly gives energetic updates at the General Membership meetings, and handles over a dozen different areas within 3090, from housing to D.O.T. to the Department of Cannabis (for a full listing of her area assignments visit Rusiness Reps).

It’s this last area of responsibility that dovetails with her recent attendance at the 2024 Labor Law & Labor Arbitration Conference in Las Vegas, in which attendees are educated on changes in labor laws and ways to best fight for the needs of their members. In California, citizens may now use marijuana legally, which has caused some issues with employers who are reluctant to hire anyone who may have traces of the drug in their system. “People should not be barred from employment because of it,” she explains, noting that for positions such as admin clerks, the responsible after-hours recreational use of marijuana is similar to having a drink after work. However, many potential candidates are being denied work due to employers’ outdated notions. This has caused a lot of “back and forth” between the union and management.

This year’s conference did bring some positive changes to 3090’s M.O.U.: the law now mandates five days of sick time for full time employees, up from three days. “We just automatically change the M.O.U. to mirror the law,” she explains. “There’s no arguing over that.”

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