During the weekend, the Hard Rock Casino reached a deal with the main casino workers union in Atlantic City, with the agreement eliminating the potential of a strike to occur at the casino property during the holiday weekend. As previously reported by CasinoGamesPro, the looming casino workers’ strike would have brought severe financial troubles to the property, which has been trying to bounce back from the financial losses it faced during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Local 54 of the Unite Here worker union in Atlantic City confirmed that on July 2nd it reached a tentative deal with the Hard Rock Casino – a move that allowed both parties to avoid a strike action that had been supposed to start at 12:01 AM on Sunday.
As reported earlier, on June 30th, Atlantic City’s largest casino workers union managed to reach a few more agreements with several other casinos – Caesars Entertainment’s Tropicana, Caesars and Harrah’s, and MGM Resorts’ Borgata. The Ocean Casino Resort and Bally’s have also signed so-called “me-too” deals to commit to the terms of the contract reached by the union with the larger casinos in Atlantic City.
Now, the agreement between the worker union and Hard Rock leaves only two smaller casino venues – the Golden Nugget and Resorts – without a tentative agreement on the matter. Representatives of Unite Here’s Local 54, however, shared expectations that both of them will agree to one in the next few days.
Unite Here’s Local 54 Inked Tentative Agrements with MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment, Too
Like the deals reached with MGM Resorts and Caesars at the end of June, the agreement with the Hard Rock Casino also needs to be ratified by the full union membership. The contract terms were not immediately unveiled by the worker union and the casino.
The president of the Hard Rock Casino in AC, Joe Lupo, noted that the newly-signed deal allows the casino to concentrate on its performance during the peak tourist season. Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International, which owns and operates the casino, described the settlement as successful as it would result in higher wages and benefits for the casino employees. Mr. Allen also noted that the company was looking forward to expanding the partnership with worker unions at both local and national levels, along with the expansion of the brand.
The tentative agreements that were reached between Local 54 of the Unite Here union and the Atlantic City casinos not only help avoid what would have been a disruptive and expensive strike action during one of the busiest weekends of the year for local Casino venues but it also provides a much-needed peace following the coronavirus pandemic. As CasinoGamesPro previously revealed, casinos in Atlantic City have been struggling to get back to their pre-pandemic levels.
In its past contracts with casino companies, the worker union focused on keeping the health care and pension benefits of its members. This time, however, it sought significant pay raises for casino workers in order to help them deal with the constantly rising living costs. The newly-signed agreements managed to avoid what would have been the first casino strike in Atlantic City since 2016, when the worker union turned down the demands of billionaire Carl Icahn associated with the Trump Taj Mahal casino.