New Las Vegas Casino Labor Deal Includes Panic Buttons for Servers

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Much of the debate holding up a new labor deal for over 36,000 service workers at Las Vegas casinos hinged on increased wages. Another big part of the recent negotiations also centered on improved working conditions. A new deal was struck with two of the biggest casino properties and part of the agreement according to a post on was panic buttons for housekeepers and cocktail servers. Subject to sexual harassment and other forms of abuse, these workers will soon be outfitted with a fast and efficient way to notify management if any form of trouble arises during the course of performing their duties.

The new agreement was reached between MGM Resorts International and Caesar’s Entertainment with the Culinary Workers Union’s Local 226. This new contract covers all service employees at Bellagio, Mandalay Bay, the Mirage, MGM Grand, Caesar’s Palace and other iconic Las Vegas casinos on the famed Strip according to the report. The actual panic button is similar to a remote for a car and it can be used to call for help if someone is being sexually harassed or verbally/physically abused while on the job. When pressed, it will alert casino management as to the name and location of the worker in trouble.

Improved working conditions has always been a major issue in labor contracts with Las Vegas casinos and this latest clause is viewed as a major victory for service workers in this industry, who are always at high risk for incidents involving sexual harassment and other forms of abuse. As part of the ongoing #MeToo movement, Las Vegas casino housekeepers, bartenders and cocktail servers have made this issue a focal point of the recent contract negotiations.

Pushing this movement even further were the numerous sexual harassment allegations leveled at casino mogul Steve Wynn. He had become notorious for sexually harassing and abusing female workers at his casinos according to most of the claims leveled against him in recent months. The report estimates that 59 percent of Las Vegas cocktail servers and 27 percent of hotel housekeepers said that they have been sexually harassed by guests, managers and others while on the job in a recent poll. The survey was completed in May and it covered more than 10,000 casino workers. It was conducted by an international labor union, Unite Here in the interest of accessing just how big the problem was.


Maria Landeros is a housekeeper at MGM Grand and she told the Culinary Union, “We are here to do our jobs and provide incredible, world-class customer service for our guests.” She added in this report, “We are not here to be abused or have people think that just because it’s Las Vegas anything goes.” The Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino is still in negotiations with the local labor union, but it already made it known to a Fox News affiliate that it has ordered panic buttons for service workers in high risk positions. The highest rate of sexual harassment in the nation takes place against women in the restaurant and hospitality industry according to an analysis performed by the Center for American Progress.

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