Following another sexual assault of a hotel maid by a wrinkled old financier, union officials have pushed to have New York hotel maids equipped with panic buttons. In the words of Peter Ward, president of the New York Hotel & Motel Trades Council, which represents about 30,000 workers:
"Let everybody in the world traveling to New York know that when they stay in a hotel room, the person cleaning that room is armed with a button that they can immediately press if you're stupid enough to get inappropriate."
The Pierre hotel is spearheading the initiative, which will give room attendants alarms fashioned after the kind the elderly use, and the Sofitel New York (site of the Dominique Strauss-Kahn incident) has agreed to the same. Frankly, I think the effort is great, if a little depressing, since it basically assumes men raping hotel maids is pretty commonplace and inevitable.
Also, wouldn't it be cheaper just to buy every incoming maid a can of Mace?