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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Monday, June 4, 2018

Media Contact:

Bethany Khan ▪ BKhan@culinaryunion226.org ▪ (702) 387-7088

Mary Hynes ▪ MHynes@mgmresorts.com

Tentative agreement reached between Culinary and Bartenders Unions

and MGM Resorts International

LAS VEGAS – The Culinary and Bartenders Unions and MGM Resorts International are pleased to announce that they have reached a tentative agreement for a new five-year contract covering 24,000 of the company’s employees at 10 casino resorts in Las Vegas.

The contract includes groundbreaking language on worker security regarding sexual harassment, workload, technology, and immigration. 

As standard practice, specific details of the contract are withheld at this time out of respect for workers who have not yet had the opportunity to get the full details of their new contract and vote to accept. A ratification vote by the membership will be scheduled soon and more details will be announced after ratification.

The new five-year contract covers the following Las Vegas MGM Resorts International casino resorts: ARIA, Bellagio, Circus Circus, Excalibur, Luxor, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay (including Delano), The Mirage, New York-New York, and Park MGM.

“This contract includes the strongest and most comprehensive immigration, sexual harassment, and safety language in the history of any union in the United States,” said Geoconda Argüello-Kline, Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union. “We are proud to protect immigrants who have Temporary Protected Status and Dreamers, require regular multilingual training to ensure workers understand how to report sexual harassment from anyone (including customers) and with the company, are committed to aggressively pursue justice, and equip thousands of workers in the city with Wi-Fi-enabled safety buttons. The historic new agreement also has the strongest economic package ever negotiated with the highest wage increases and healthcare and pension benefits for workers.” 

“As a single mom, if I didn’t have the great health insurance we have secured and strengthened, I wouldn’t be able to afford to take care of my son who has medical issues. With this contract, I can safeguard my son’s future,” said Cheryl Lawrence, a baker at the MGM Grand. “Hundreds of thousands of workers before me sacrificed and fought to make sure that I have the benefits I have. So now, I am fighting for the future generations.” 

"We understand that the best service, hospitality, and entertainment are provided by people, especially by those who feel valued and respected,” said Corey Sanders, Chief Operating Officer for MGM Resorts International. “We worked diligently to craft an agreement that demonstrates our long-term commitment to our employees and their families and allows our Company and the Unions to continue creating secure jobs and future opportunities in Las Vegas.” 

“I feel happy because my job and benefits are protected and that I won’t have to worry about providing for my family,” said Victor Chicas, a food server at Mandalay Bay. “Strengthening owners and successorship language in this contract was important to me because I know I will be protected as companies restructure ownership. I stand in solidarity with my Strip and Downtown brothers and sisters. We are ohana and nobody gets left behind.” 

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ABOUT THE CULINARY UNION:
Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, Nevada affiliates of UNITE HERE, represent over 57,000 workers in Las Vegas and Reno, including at most of the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. UNITE HERE represents 270,000 workers in gaming, hotel, and food service industries in North America.

The Culinary Union, through the Culinary Health Fund, is one of the largest healthcare consumers in the state. The Culinary Health Fund is sponsored by the Culinary Union and Las Vegas-area employers. It provides health insurance coverage for over 143,000 Nevadans, the Culinary Union’s members and their dependents.

The Culinary Union is Nevada’s largest immigrant organization with over 57,000 members - a diverse membership that is approximately 55% women and 54% Latino. Members - who work as guest room attendants, bartenders, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, and kitchen workers - come from 173 countries and speak over 40 different languages. The Culinary Union has been fighting for fair wages, job security, and good health benefits for working men and women in Nevada for 83 years.

CulinaryUnion226.org / @Culinary226 

ABOUT MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL:

MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) is an S&P 500® global entertainment company with national and international locations featuring best-in-class hotels and casinos, state-of-the-art meetings and conference spaces, incredible live and theatrical entertainment experiences, and an extensive array of restaurant, nightlife and retail offerings. MGM Resorts creates immersive, iconic experiences through its suite of Las Vegas-inspired brands. The MGM Resorts portfolio encompasses 28 unique hotel offerings including some of the most recognizable resort brands in the industry. Expanding throughout the U.S. and around the world, the company in 2018 opened MGM COTAI in Macau and the first Bellagio-branded hotel in Shanghai. It also is developing MGM Springfield in Massachusetts. The 78,000 global employees of MGM Resorts are proud of their company for being recognized as one of FORTUNE® Magazine's World's Most Admired Companies®. For more information visit us at www.mgmresorts.com.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Media Contact:
Bethany Khan ▪ BKhan@culinaryunion226.org ▪ (702) 387-7088

Richard Broome ▪ RBroome@caesars.com ▪ (702) 407-6476

Tentative agreement reached between Culinary and Bartenders Union and Caesars Entertainment Corporation 

Las Vegas, NV – Culinary Union and Bartenders Union and Caesars Entertainment Corporation are pleased to announce that they have reached a tentative agreement for a new five-year contract covering 12,000 of the company’s employees in Las Vegas.

The historic new agreement includes groundbreaking language on worker security regarding sexual harassment, workload, technology, and immigration. 

As standard practice, specific details of the contract are withheld at this time out of respect for workers who have not yet had the opportunity to get the full details of their new contract and vote to accept. A ratification vote by the membership will be scheduled very soon and more details will be announced after ratification.

The new five-year contract covers the following Las Vegas Caesars Entertainment Corporation casino resorts: Bally’s, Flamingo, Harrah’s, Paris, Planet Hollywood, Cromwell, The LINQ, Caesars Palace (including Nobu), and the Rio.

“This innovative contract sets clear goals regarding technology and automation for worker retention, job training, advance notice of implementation, and severance package,” said Geoconda Argüello-Kline, Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union. “The Culinary Union has fought hard to protect workers over our 83 years and this new agreement is the best contract with the highest wage increases that workers have ever had.” 

“I feel great because I can retire with dignity, my healthcare is protected, and now workers have a say in how technology is used in the workplace,” said Leain Vashon, a bell captain at Paris and Vice President for the Culinary Union. “I stand in solidarity with my Strip and Downtown brothers and sisters as they fight to get a contract. I’ll be supporting them in everyway possible so that they can have the same middle-class standard we’ve fought for.”

“We are pleased that all economic and personal security issues have been resolved with this new contract and that employees will continue to provide guests superior service and experiences,” said Tom Jenkin, Global President and lead negotiator for Caesars Entertainment Corporation. “This historic agreement ensures that our union team members will continue to be a crucial part of the Las Vegas Dream.”

“I am ecstatic,” said Antonia Villegas, guest room attendant at The Linq. “Having a settled contract means peace of mind for my family. After months of negotiating worker-centered safety proposals, my workplace is now more secure because we have comprehensive sexual harassment language that protects my coworkers and I.”

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ABOUT THE CULINARY UNION:
Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, Nevada affiliates of UNITE HERE, represent over 57,000 workers in Las Vegas and Reno, including at most of the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. UNITE HERE represents 270,000 workers in gaming, hotel, and food service industries in North America.

The Culinary Union, through the Culinary Health Fund, is one of the largest healthcare consumers in the state. The Culinary Health Fund is sponsored by the Culinary Union and Las Vegas-area employers. It provides health insurance coverage for over 143,000 Nevadans, the Culinary Union’s members and their dependents.

The Culinary Union is Nevada’s largest immigrant organization with over 57,000 members - a diverse membership that is approximately 55% women and 54% Latino. Members - who work as guest room attendants, bartenders, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, and kitchen workers - come from 173 countries and speak over 40 different languages. The Culinary Union has been fighting for fair wages, job security, and good health benefits for working men and women in Nevada for 83 years.

CulinaryUnion226.org / @Culinary226 

ABOUT CAESARS ENTERTAINMENT CORPORATION:

Caesars Entertainment is the world's most diversified casino-entertainment provider and the most geographically diverse U.S. casino-entertainment company. Since its beginning in Reno, Nevada, in 1937, Caesars Entertainment has grown through development of new resorts, expansions and acquisitions and its portfolio of subsidiaries now operate 47 casinos in 13 U.S. states and five countries. Caesars Entertainment's resorts operate primarily under the Caesars®, Harrah's® and Horseshoe® brand names. Caesars Entertainment's portfolio also includes the Caesars Entertainment UK family of casinos. Caesars Entertainment is focused on building loyalty and value with its guests through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership. Caesars Entertainment is committed to environmental sustainability and energy conservation and recognizes the importance of being a responsible steward of the environment. For more information, please visit www.caesars.com.

MEDIA ADVISORY FOR:

Friday, June 1, 2018 at 10am Pacific

Media Contact: 
Bethany Khan ▪ BKhan@culinaryunion226.org ▪ (702) 387-7088 

Culinary Union opens “Strike HQ” as preparations for a citywide strike continue 

WHAT: Culinary Union opens “Strike HQ” as contracts for tens of thousands of workers have expired as of midnight May 31, 2018. 34 casino resorts are now operating without settled union contracts and hospitality workers are preparing for a citywide strike. Workers will be painting the “Strike HQ” and making thousands of strike picket signs.

WHO: Culinary and Bartenders Unions members. Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union, Geoconda Argüello-Kline.

WHEN & WHERE: Friday, June 1, 2018 from 10am-12pm. The “Strike HQ” building is in the adjacent lot next to the Culinary Union (1630 South Commerce Street Las Vegas, Nevada 89102).

WHY: 

Union contracts covering 50,000 union workers expired midnight May 31, 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.  

New investor alerts from UNITE HERE Gaming Research, the research arm of the hospitality workers’ union, project that a one-month strike in Las Vegas could cost the two largest employers on the Las Vegas Strip – MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) and Caesars Entertainment Corporation (NASDAQ: CZR) – over $300 million in operating profits.

In a survey conducted by the Culinary and Bartender Unions in the last two months of over 10,000 Las Vegas casino workers: 59% of cocktail servers and 27% of hotel housekeepers said they had been sexually harassed by guests, managers, or others while on the job. 72% of cocktail servers and 53% of hotel housekeepers said a guest had done something to make them feel uncomfortable or unsafe. The results of the survey and worker concerns led the Culinary and Bartenders Unions to propose stronger safety protections in current contract negotiations for workers.

25,000 workers voted by 99% on May 22 to authorize a strike after contracts expired. Workers can walk out anytime the Culinary Union calls for a strike.

Members of the Culinary and Bartenders Unions who will be participating in the citywide strike include: Bartenders, guest room attendants, cocktail servers, food servers, porters, bellman, cooks, and kitchen workers who are employed at the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and Downtown Las Vegas.

The Culinary and Bartenders Unions have proposed 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 and in Downtown Las Vegas for 67 days which crippled in the Las Vegas hospitality industry until contracts were settled. The last Culinary Union citywide strike vote was in 2002 when 25,000 workers packed the Thomas and Mack and an overwhelming majority voted yes to authorize a strike.

The Culinary and Bartenders Unions are encouraging Nevada locals, elected officials, political candidates, and tourists to support workers by not patronizing hotels and casinos under a labor dispute. In an event of a strike, please do not cross picket lines. 

The contracts have expired for the following Las Vegas casino resorts:

 

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ABOUT THE CULINARY UNION:
Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, Nevada affiliates of UNITE HERE, represent over 57,000 workers in Las Vegas and Reno, including at most of the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. UNITE HERE represents 270,000 workers in gaming, hotel, and food service industries in North America.

The Culinary Union, through the Culinary Health Fund, is one of the largest healthcare consumers in the state. The Culinary Health Fund is sponsored by the Culinary Union and Las Vegas-area employers. It provides health insurance coverage for over 143,000 Nevadans, the Culinary Union’s members and their dependents.

The Culinary Union is Nevada’s largest immigrant organization with over 57,000 members - a diverse membership that is approximately 55% women and 54% Latino. Members - who work as guest room attendants, bartenders, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, and kitchen workers - come from 173 countries and speak over 40 different languages. The Culinary Union has been fighting for fair wages, job security, and good health benefits for working men and women in Nevada for 83 years.

CulinaryUnion226.org / @Culinary226 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Media Contact:
Bethany Khan ▪ BKhan@culinaryunion226.org ▪ (702) 387-7088

Las Vegas casino workers’ union is calling on visitors to not sexually harass workers

Las Vegas, NV - In a survey conducted by UNITE HERE’s Culinary and Bartender Unions of over 10,000 Las Vegas casino workers: 59% of cocktail servers and 27% of hotel housekeepers said they had been sexually harassed by guests, managers or others while on the job. 72% of cocktail servers and 53% of hotel housekeepers said a guest had done something to make them feel uncomfortable or unsafe.

The Culinary Union, Nevada’s largest union, is actively reaching out to Las Vegas tourists and asking them to pledge to not sexually harass Las Vegas casino workers while they are visiting. Other UNITE HERE locals will be leafleting the pledge at major airports around the country. The pledge is available on the Culinary Union’s Vegas Travel Alert website: www.VegasTravelAlert.org/Pledge

The results of the survey and worker concerns led the Culinary and Bartenders Unions to propose stronger safety protections in current contract negotiations for 50,000 workers in 34 casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. The contracts expire midnight May 31, 2018.

Two major casino companies, MGM Resorts International and Caesars Entertainment Corporation, which respectively employ 24,000 and 12,000 union workers, have been positively responsive to the contract proposals on sexual harassment and safety buttons for guest room attendants.

“We are pleased on the progress in discussions with the companies about sexual harassment and safety,” said Geoconda Argüello-Kline, Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union“We also want to make sure Las Vegas visitors know they have to respect casino workers and they cannot abuse them.”

 “I was carrying a heavy tray full of drinks on the casino floor, and a high roller at the dice game grabbed me by the neck with both of his hands and forced me to kiss him for good luck,” said Debra Jeffries, a cocktail server at Bally’s, a Caesars Entertainment Corporation casino resort. “I have permanent nerve damage from that incident and I live in pain everyday.”

“We are here to do our jobs and provide incredible, world-class customer service for our guests,” said Maria Landeros, a guest room attendant at the MGM Grand, MGM Resorts International property. “We are not here to be abused or have people think that just because it’s Las Vegas anything goes.”

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. 

The 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.

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.   

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ABOUT THE CULINARY UNION:
Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, Nevada affiliates of UNITE HERE, represent over 57,000 workers in Las Vegas and Reno, including at most of the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. UNITE HERE represents 270,000 workers in gaming, hotel, and food service industries in North America.

The Culinary Union, through the Culinary Health Fund, is one of the largest healthcare consumers in the state. The Culinary Health Fund is sponsored by the Culinary Union and Las Vegas-area employers. It provides health insurance coverage for over 143,000 Nevadans, the Culinary Union’s members and their dependents.

The Culinary Union is Nevada’s largest immigrant organization with over 57,000 members - a diverse membership that is approximately 55% women and 54% Latino. Members - who work as guest room attendants, bartenders, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, and kitchen workers - come from 173 countries and speak over 40 different languages. The Culinary Union has been fighting for fair wages, job security, and good health benefits for working men and women in Nevada for 83 years.

CulinaryUnion226.org / @Culinary226 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

MEDIA CONTACT:
Bethany Khan ▪ BKhan@culinaryunion226.org ▪ (702) 387-7088

 Las Vegas casino workers vote to authorize a citywide strike 

Las Vegas, NV – 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 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. 

The Culinary Union, Nevada’s largest union, maintains www.VegasTravelAlert.org, a website intended as a service for meeting and convention planners and all other travelers who need to know whether labor disputes could affect their plans in Las Vegas.

Labor contracts for the below 34 casino resorts expire midnight May 31, 2018:

 

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ABOUT THE CULINARY UNION:
Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, Nevada affiliates of UNITE HERE, represent over 57,000 workers in Las Vegas and Reno, including at most of the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. UNITE HERE represents 270,000 workers in gaming, hotel, and food service industries in North America.

The Culinary Union, through the Culinary Health Fund, is one of the largest healthcare consumers in the state. The Culinary Health Fund is sponsored by the Culinary Union and Las Vegas-area employers. It provides health insurance coverage for over 143,000 Nevadans, the Culinary Union’s members and their dependents.

The Culinary Union is Nevada’s largest immigrant organization with over 57,000 members - a diverse membership that is approximately 55% women and 54% Latino. Members - who work as guest room attendants, bartenders, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, and kitchen workers - come from 173 countries and speak over 40 different languages. The Culinary Union has been fighting for fair wages, job security, and good health benefits for working men and women in Nevada for 83 years.

CulinaryUnion226.org / @Culinary226 

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