Las Vegas Hospitality Workers Vote on Strike

More than 53,000 Las Vegas hospitality workers will vote on September 26th to decide if they should go on strike if no contract agreements are reached, announced two of their unions on Thursday.

The Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, which are Nevada affiliates of the labor union Unite Here, represent hospitality workers in Las Vegas. These workers include hotel and casino housekeepers, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellhops, cooks, and more.

Negotiations have been ongoing between the unions and the top three Las Vegas hotel owners, MGM Resorts, Caesars Entertainment, and Wynn Resorts, since the contracts expired on June 1st. It’s important to note that some affected workers are employed by other hotels as well. Currently, workers, unions, and hotels are operating under a contract extension.

If negotiations are deemed unsuccessful, both sides must give seven days’ notice. In the unions’ case, this notice may signify the need for a strike. According to a spokesperson for the Culinary Workers Union, both parties are committed to reaching a resolution to avoid any disruptions to the industry.

Ted Pappageorge, the secretary-treasurer for the Culinary Workers Union, emphasized their determination to secure the best contract ever in the union’s history. The goal is to ensure that workers are not left behind while companies generate record profits. Fairness and equitable distribution of success are at the forefront of their demands.

MGM, Wynn, and Caesars Beat Analysts’ Expectations in Quarterly Financial Results

MGM and Wynn reported strong quarterly financial results that exceeded analysts’ expectations, highlighting their resilience in the face of challenges. Meanwhile, Caesars turned a profit in the second quarter, a significant turnaround from the same period last year when they suffered losses.

Union Concerns and Important Issues

One key issue that the union, represented by Pappageorge, is concerned about is the welfare of the workers. Their focus includes wages, benefits, workload reductions, technology protection, safety measures, the right to strike, and reemploying more workers. Additionally, the union has voiced grievances about hotels maintaining pandemic-era practices that have resulted in reduced staffing levels in certain areas, such as housekeeping.

The Need for New Contracts

Negotiations are currently underway for new five-year contracts between the unions and the respective hotel chains. However, exact details about the unions’ wage proposals have not been publicly disclosed.

Industry and Association Responses

As of Thursday, both MGM and Wynn have not provided any comments regarding the ongoing situation. The same goes for Caesars and the Las Vegas Hospitality Association, as they did not respond to requests for comment.

No Strike Deadline Set Yet

Although discussions are ongoing, no deadline for a potential strike has been set by the unions representing Las Vegas hospitality workers. However, it’s important to note that if a strike were to occur, the number of employees involved would far exceed the 15,000 hotel workers who have been engaged in rolling strikes in Los Angeles since July.

Additional Resources:

  • From the archives (May 2023): Hotel housekeeping jobs have fallen by 102,000 during the pandemic. What happened?
  • See: Violent clashes are marring a summer of labor solidarity. Here’s what happened at a wedding.
  • From the archives (July 2023): Actors, writers, hotel housekeepers, and grad-student workers are all striking for the same reason
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