Power to the employees
Maverick Gaming LLC employees in Washington have overwhelmingly voted to become part of a union with the full support of their boss. This sees them become the first casino workers in the state to unionize.
1,900 workers from across 19 card rooms in the state will join the Teamsters 117 union, thanks to the encouragement of Maverick CEO Eric Perrson.
In an interview, Perrson said partnering with Teamsters was something he had planned to do when Maverick came to Washington State. He added:
This gives employees a stronger voice in the legislative process.”
Unions face resistance in the casino industry
While unions only account for around 10% of workers in the US as a whole, in Washington that percentage is higher, currently standing at around 18.8%.
In the casino industry, unions are still strongly opposed by management, with Station Casinos in Las Vegas recently in the news for refusing to recognize legal votes by employees to join unions. The votes were later confirmed by a judge in court.
1,900 of the 2,200 Maverick Gaming employees set to become members shortly
However, Perrson has championed joining Teamster, with 1,900 of the 2,200 Maverick Gaming employees set to become members shortly. The vote to unionize took just two days, one of the quickest on record in the history of Washington. It was put together mainly by table game dealers and restaurant workers.
Maverick Gaming has also said it will expand its card rooms, so the number of employees in the union could soon be on the rise.
Efforts to contest gambling legislation
The Teamsters 117 union has had a lot to say on the latest developments regarding gambling. It believes favoring tribal casinos in the state could put others’ pastimes at a disadvantage.
Legislation that is going through at the moment excludes anyone other than tribal casinos from offering a sportsbook in Washington State. This is something Maverick Gaming has spoken out against in the past.
Maverick Gaming plans to spend $500m in Washington state alone on further card rooms and other entertainment facilities. Perrson said of the investment, “As we pick up more properties, we’d expect more union membership.”