Detroit: MGM workers reject tentative labor contract; MotorCity and Greektown staff vote for ratification

After reaching a tentative union contract last week with Downtown Detroit’s three casinos, workers at MGM Resorts International’s casino in the city have now rejected the proposed five-year labor deal, extending their month-long strike, according to union officials on Monday.

Unionized casino workers at MGM Grand Detroit remained on strike on Monday, Nov. 20, after voting against the proposal. The Detroit Casino Council, representing unionized casino workers from various unions, did not disclose reasons for the rejection, Click On Detroit reported.

In comparison, Motor City Casino, and Hollywood at Greek Town workers voted in favor of the five-year contracts over the weekend. The strike at these two properties officially ended on Sunday, Nov. 19, at 9 p.m.

The council said that unionized workers at each of the three Detroit properties voted separately, and additional bargaining dates would be scheduled. In a letter to employees, MGM Grand expressed disappointment with the result.

This is a very disappointing result, especially considering the historic nature of our offer and the fact that it would immediately and positively benefit our DCC-represented MGM Grand employees and their families,” Matt Buckley, President and COO of MGM Resorts Midwest Group, said in a statement Monday, as per the report.

It’s also disappointing because the other two Detroit casinos voted ‘yes’ on ratification. All employees were voting on the exact same contract, which the DCC itself said was ‘a historic investment in Detroit’s future’ and ‘fulfills the gaming industry’s promise to Detroit of high-paying casino jobs with good benefits,’” Buckley added.

The Detroit Casino Council had reached a tentative agreement on Nov. 17, 32 days into the strike, for a new contract covering 3,700 workers at MGM Grand Detroit, Hollywood Casino at Greektown (operated by Penn Entertainment), and MotorCity Casino.

The contract includes the largest wage increases negotiated in the 23-year history of the Detroit casino industry, featuring an immediate 18% pay raise on average, a blog post on the website of United Auto Workers said. The agreement also ensures no health care cost increases for employees, workload reductions, job protections, the introduction of technology contract language, retirement increases, and other provisions.

Unite Here Local 24, the United Auto Workers (UAW), and Teamsters Local 1038 were among the unions involved in negotiating the contract with the companies. Despite the ongoing strike at MGM Grand, the casino assured that operations would continue as usual.

Earlier this month, around 40,000 hospitality workers on the Las Vegas Strip also reached a tentative labor deal with casinos operated by MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment, and Wynn Encore Resort.