The following article was originally published here.
LAS VEGAS ̶ UAW-represented table games dealers at The Flamingo/Margaritaville Casino on Friday overwhelmingly ratified their first-ever contract, a groundbreaking agreement that raises the bar for all gaming workers in Las Vegas. More than 400 dealers, members of UAW Local 3555, ratified the agreement by 91 percent. Through the collective bargaining process, they were able to win significant guaranteed year-over-year wage increases, a new grievance procedure to protect against unjustified discipline, and language that finally draws a line in the sand against the growing practice of diverting their tips to compensate managers.
“This agreement is solid proof of the gains that can be made when Las Vegas gaming employees come together to better their futures,” said UAW President Dennis Williams, who directs the union’s Gaming Department. “We’re proud of the hard work the bargaining committee has done and the success they’ve had in improving the lives of their co-workers and their families.” Dealers won more than $5,000 in wage improvements over the term of the five-year agreement. Part-time dealers, who have not seen an increase in their base rate other than state and federally mandated minimum wage increases, will be included in the base wage rate hikes. An arbitrary merit system, which oftentimes resulted in biased yearly reviews, has been abolished.
Full-time dealers will receive two additional paid days of bereavement leave for the death of an immediate family member. Part-time dealers will also receive three paid days of bereavement leave. All dealers won an additional paid personal day off for each year of the agreement.
Tips or “tokes” as they are commonly known among dealers, on average represent about 70 percent of a dealer’s pay. Some houses in Las Vegas divert high percentages of tokes to managers who unfairly share in funds that are intended to reward the performance of dealers.
“The bargaining committee did an exceptional job to ensure that our members are fairly compensated, including winning strong language against toke-sharing with managers,” said Gary Jones, director of UAW Region 5, where Las Vegas is located. “Tokes are the financial lifeblood of dealers. We take the dealers’ concerns over tokes seriously and this historic agreement reflects that.” The Flamingo is Las Vegas’ first casino and its dealers are also the first in Las Vegas to organize and win a contract under UAW representation. Jones said the UAW will host an open house on May 12, from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. to officially open its Las Vegas office at 4310 Cameron St., Suite #13. All Las Vegas dealers are invited to discuss ways they can have a voice and improve their workplace.
“We’re proud to say this agreement is not only a game-changer for our members, but is one that dealers at other houses in Las Vegas will take notice of,” said Brian Bay, dealer unit chairman at Local 3555. “Our bargaining committee’s hard work and commitment, combined with the UAW’s longtime experience representing gaming employees, made this agreement possible.” Slot attendants at The Flamingo earlier this year ratified a five-year contract. The UAW represents more than 12,000 gaming employees in Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, and Rhode Island.
For additional information, contact Vince Piscopo, UAW Public Relations Department, (419) 351-4188, or firstname.lastname@example.org.