Ahead of a Monday morning strike deadline, Culinary Workers Union Local 226, one of the largest and most powerful unions in the U.S., announced deals with several downtown Las Vegas properties and said they would not go on strike.
A representative from the Culinary Union had said on Friday, February 2 that if a new contract was not reached by February 5, then a strike would be called at 13 casino resorts, including the Rio, Sahara Las Vegas, and Virgin Las Vegas, and downtown casinos including Binion’s Gambling Hall & Hotel, Circa Resort & Casino, Downtown Grand Hotel & Casino, El Cortez Hotel & Casino, Four Queens Hotel & Casino, Fremont Hotel & Casino, Golden Gate Hotel & Casino, Golden Nugget Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, and the D Casino.
“These were tough negotiations,” Culinary Union Secretary-Treasurer Ted Pappageorge said in a statement. “It took over 2 years of preparation, 10 months of negotiations, lots of hard work, committee meetings, sleepless nights, and worker-led organizing.” The union announced that as negotiations continue, they are giving Virgin Hotels Las Vegas extra time and anticipate a resolution in the coming weeks.
In November 2023, tens of thousands of workers belonging to the Culinary and Bartenders Unions prepared to walk off the job if Las Vegas Strip casinos failed to strike a deal for new five-year contracts. The three powerhouse employers, MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment, and Wynn Resorts, reached agreements with the unions hours before 35,000 workers were set to go on strike.
The union’s negotiating wins last year included a 10 percent wage increase in the first year and a total of 32 percent in raises over the life of the new contract for every worker, on-the-job safety protections, and job security in the event of another pandemic or economic crisis. The culinary union represents 60,000 guest room attendants, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, bartenders, and laundry and kitchen workers statewide. The strike deadline last year butted up against the Formula One Grand Prix event.