Dear ASAC/AI Conference Participants:
As some of you may be aware, the hotel workers’ union for the Oakland Marriott City Center Hotel voted to initiate strike proceedings on September 18, 2018. Yesterday union members walked out and are actively on strike.
To avoid any disruption of the conference, the ASAC/AI conference planning committee is working on alternative meeting space for our plenaries and breakout sessions. Though plans have yet to be finalized, we believe conference events will take place at the Oakland Asian Cultural Centre (388 9th Street) and Oakstop (274 14th Street). We are fortunate that these new spaces are close together in Downtown Oakland. For those who have purchased advance tickets, the banquet will still be at the Peony Seafood Restaurant (388 9th Street). An updated version of the program will be uploaded shortly that indicates the new locations.
We understand that this situation may complicate conference logistics, but we also recognize that broad support for organized labor among individuals in our organization may have prevented a large number of presenters and other registrants from attending the conference in the case of a strike. For this reason, we felt we had no choice but to change the conference location in order to ensure the best conference experience possible for the largest number of participants. We are grateful for your support and patience as we make these adjustments and are confident that our conference will be a success at our new venues.
If you have sleeping room reservations at the Marriott City Center, we believe they will be honored by the Marriott, but have not yet had final confirmation on this point. We have no way of knowing how long the strike at the Marriott will last; it may still be ongoing over the dates of our conference, or it may be resolved by that time. If you do not wish to cross a union picket line, you may wish to make alternate housing arrangements at a hotel that can be cancelled should the Marriott resolve its labor unrest before our conference. We will update you as soon as more information becomes available.
If you have an questions or concerns, please contact the conference steering committee co-chairs, Cynthia Callahan, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Jenny Wills, email@example.com.
For information about the strike and alternate hotels in the area should you choose to rebook:
https://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/oakcd-courtyard-oakland-downtown/ (This Marriott is covered under a separate labor contract.)