The famed Las Vegas casinos may be facing quite a dilemma as tens of thousands of hospitality workers are preparing for a strike next month.
Unions representing Las Vegas casino workers on Tuesday won the right to have a citywide strike as early as June 1 should they be unable to reach a deal with their employers. The voting reached 99% from roughly 25,000 members of the Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165 that participated in the voting session.
According to the Culinary union press release, the strike has been voted to go if a new five-year contract is not reached. The contracts cover some of the biggest players on the Las Vegas Strip, nearly three dozen casino resorts, including MGM Resorts International, Planet Hollywood, and Caesars Palace.
The union represents many of those who are working in the front of the house as well as those who are working from behind the scenes which include cooks, servers, porters, and housekeepers.
The union says that it is seeking guarantees "to provide (a) greater measure of security for members including workplace safety, sexual harassment, subcontracting, technology, and immigration."
Representatives of the union workers are also demanding higher wages, arguing that the casinos are not spreading profits adequately among the people who keep their facilities running. They are also demanding protection from layoffs caused by new technology.
Las Vegas casino strikes have often been avoided even if there have been a "yes" vote by union members. The last citywide strike happened in 1984, affecting 32 resorts, and spanning 67 days. Currently, casinos still have a week to reach an agreement with the union before a potential strike is called. Talks may likely continue after June 1 without any strike being called.