Detroit Today: Will Detroit’s casinos bet on their workers?

The current contract expires in mid-October if there is no resolution.

Union workers from Detroit's three casinos voted to authorize a strike if deemed necessary by the Detroit Casino Council.

On Friday, 99% of union workers from Detroit’s three casinos — MGM Grand Detroit, Hollywood Casino at Greektown and MotorCity Casino Hotel — voted to authorize a strike if deemed necessary by the Detroit Casino Council. The council negotiates contracts for all the different union locals, including the current deal between workers and the casinos, which expires in mid-October.

Union representatives Nia Winston and Terri Sykes joined Detroit Today to provide their perspective on why workers authorized the potential strike.

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Nia Winston is the president of UNITE HERE Local 24 (the union of hospitality workers). She says her union has felt supported by Detroiters, regardless of their union membership status. 

“This is a labor city with a lot of labor, love, and whether you’re a union member or non union member, many of the issues are the same,” says Winston. 

Terri Sykes is a dealer at the Motor City Casino and President of UAW Local 7777, representing the casino dealers. She says the work of casino dealers is important and should be compensated as such. 

“Whether I’m a dealer, or a food cashier or a housekeeper or a bartender, we are the reason why those guests come back day after day after day,” says Sykes.

Listen to Detroit Today with host Stephen Henderson weekdays from 9-10 a.m. ET on 101.9 WDET and streaming on-demand.

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    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.