Strike could cost four Atlantic City casinos $2.6m a day, union says

Casino workers are prepared to strike at the start of next month.
Casino workers are prepared to strike at the start of next month.

Local 54 of the Unite Here union is planning to start a strike in just days if an agreement is not reached.

US.- Unite Here Local 54 has warned that if a strike goes ahead in Atlantic City, it could cost four casinos $2.6m a day in losses. The union has authorised strike action if new wage contract agreements are not reached by the beginning of July.

It estimates that the city’s top-performing casino, the Borgata, could lose $1.6m a day in the event of a strike. Meanwhile, the three casinos owned by Caesars Entertainment could collectively lose $1m a day. It The made its projections based on past casino revenue and earnings data reported to the state, assuming that a strike would cause revenue to decline by 25 per cent year-on-year in the third quarter.

The union says it’s seeking a wage increase for its workers due to financial needs resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic and inflation. If a deal cannot be reached, casino workers from the Borgata and from Caesars Entertainment’s Caesars, Harrah’s, and Tropicana, are prepared to walk out. A strike against Hard Rock is also planned for July 3.

See also: Atlantic City dealers’ union supports calls for casino smoking ban

In early June, hundreds of Atlantic City casino workers gathered outside the Tropicana casino pushing for new contracts with pay rises. Existing contracts with eight of the nine casinos in Atlantic City expired on May 31. The union has been negotiating for over a month.

Unite Here Local 54, which represents over 10,000 Atlantic City casino workers, says it wants to keep workers from falling behind in an economy where labour shortages are increasing salaries in other industries and inflation is eating away at consumers’ purchasing power.

The union released a survey of 1,934 of its members that showed 61 per cent reported struggling to pay their rent or mortgage on time in the past year. Some 32 per cent reported they lacked money for food, 37 per cent lacked enough for utilities and 27 per cent for transportation.

See also: Atlantic City casinos show revenue growth in Q1

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