U.S. Hotels Join AHLA in Aiding Health Community and First Responders
Many members of the health community — doctors, nurses, first responders, and others who are helping in the fight against COVID-19 — are struggling to find housing close to their outposts. The American Hotel and Lodging Association’s Hospitality for Hope initiative is helping to address this by connecting hotel properties with the health community.
AHLA is the sole national association representing all segments of the U.S. lodging industry and contributes nearly $660 billion to U.S. GDP. The group created Hospitality for Hope to boost collaboration between the hotel industry and local, state and federal governments to help employees, communities across the country, and the industry during this unprecedented health crisis.
“The hotel industry is uniquely positioned to support and help strengthen our communities and first responders who are on the frontlines of dealing with this ongoing public health crisis,” said Chip Rogers, AHLA president and CEO.
More than 15,000 hotels across the United States have signed up so far. These properties are willing and able to assist government efforts and work with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in coordination with the US Army CORPS of Engineers and local emergency management and public health agencies, to support the health community and first responders who need temporary housing.
Working with the HHS and industry partner state associations, ALHA is creating a national Hospitality for Hope database. This will help match and streamline the process of connecting hotels with federal, state and local governments. Government officials will be able to search for these willing properties based on geographic location.
Already, examples of hotels partnering with local and state officials in communities are being reported in Chicago and California, and more efforts are expected in the coming days and weeks, including in New York City and Texas.
Michael Jacobson, CEO and president of the Illinois Hotel & Lodging Association, said that the number of hotels wanting to be part of the program is growing by the hour.
“Hospitality for Hope is one of the many ways our hotels are helping those in need in our communities during this time of crisis,” said Kim Sabow, president and CEO of the Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association. “We look forward to working with all interested parties, including local and state officials and the federal government, to find innovative solutions to make it through this critical time together.”
Learn more about the AHLA Hospitality for Hope initiative, and how to get involved, here.