Striking casino workers gathered in the Coleman A Young Municipal Center Tuesday morning to voice their concerns to Detroit City Council members about their ongoing labor dispute.
Last week, 3,700 casino workers walked off the job at MGM Grand, Motor City Casino and Hollywood Casino at Greektown after the gaming houses failed to reach new contracts before old deals expired with the Detroit Casino Council — the group of five unions handling negotiations. The strike has a wall-to wall impact on operations at the three casinos, with workers in a variety of positions impacted including dealers, cleaning staff, food and beverage workers, valets, engineers and more.
Union officials say they accepted modest raises of 3% to protect healthcare during the 2020 round of bargaining — essentially extending its prior five-year-contract by three years. As a result, they say it’s been almost a decade since casino workers have seen meaningful pay increases.
Striking members said last week they want to be compensated for what they gave up in the last round of negotiations and to address lingering workplace issues.
“The company is offering us nickels and dimes, and they want us to pay more for healthcare,” said Terri Sykes, a dealer at MotorCity Casino with 24 years of service and president of UAW Local 7777, in a statement. “As a two-time breast cancer survivor, I’m fighting to protect our health care. These companies are making more than ever, and it’s time they respect us for all the sacrifices we made to keep the doors open during the pandemic.”
The DCC says the city risks losing more than $450,000 in tax revenue during each day of the strike. In 2022, the wagering tax was the city’s second highest revenue source, surpassing property taxes, the DCC reported.
Other headlines for Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023:
- The UAW strike against Detroit’s automakers has expanded again, with 5,000 workers walking off the job today at General Motors Arlington, Texas assembly plant — GM’s largest.
- Detroit’s Music Hall has announced that it’s starting a $122 million expansion project that will include a new performance venue, recording and practice studios and leasable office space.
- Gas prices are falling in metro Detroit, with the average price of a gallon of self-serve unleaded at $3.41 per gallon — down three cents from last week.
- The 20th annual Detroit Tree Lighting will be held on Friday, Nov. 17, at Campus Martius, the Downtown Detroit Partnership announced this week.
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