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Culinary Workers Union

50,000 Could Go on Strike in Vegas

If management doesn't get their act together, June will be a tough month in the Sin City

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by Guest Post on
May 24, 2018

Members of UNITE HERE’s Culinary and Bartenders Unions have voted to authorize a citywide strike. 25,000 union members participated in two voting sessions throughout the day (May 22, 2018) and 99% voted yes.

Union contracts covering 50,000 union workers expire on June 1, 2018 at 34 casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and Downtown Las Vegas, including properties operated by MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment Corporation, Penn National, Golden Entertainment, Boyd Gaming, and other companies. 

50,000 hospitality employees who are preparing to go out on strike after June 1 include: Bartenders, guest room attendants, cocktail servers, food servers, porters, bellman, cooks, and kitchen workers employed at the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and Downtown Las Vegas.

“A strike is a last resort. We want to come to an agreement, but the union and workers are preparing for a citywide strike if contracts are not settled by June 1,” said Geoconda Argüello-Kline, Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union. “We support innovations that improve jobs, but we oppose automation when it only destroys jobs. Our industry must innovate without losing the human touch. That's why employers should work with us to stay strong, fair, and competitive.”

“I voted yes to go on strike to ensure my job isn’t outsourced to a robot,” said Chad Neanover, a prep cook at the Margaritaville, a Caesars Entertainment property. “We know technology is coming, but workers shouldn’t be pushed out or left behind. Casino companies should ensure that technology is harnessed to improve the quality and safety in the workplace, not as a way to completely eliminate our jobs.”

“I don’t want to go on strike, but I will,” said Adela Montes de Oca, a guest room attendant at the Aria, an MGM Resorts International property. “The company is more profitable than ever because of the hard work we do, and I’m going to keep fighting to make sure that we have a fair share of that success.” 

The Culinary and Bartenders Unions are negotiating new contract language to provide greater measure of security for members including workplace safety, sexual harassment, subcontracting, technology, and immigration. In addition, the Union’s economic proposal seeks to provide workers a fair share of the employers’ enormous anticipated cash flows and Trump tax windfalls.   

In 1984, thousands of Culinary Union members went on a citywide strike across the Las Vegas Strip for 67 days which crippled in the Las Vegas hospitality industry until contracts were settled.

The Culinary and Bartenders Unions are encouraging Nevada locals, elected officials, political candidates, and tourists to support workers by not patronizing hotels and casinos in case there is a labor dispute on or after June 1, 2018. In an event of a strike, please do not cross picket lines. 

Below is a list of properties that could be affected.

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