Las Vegas: Culinary workers ratify new five-year agreements with MGM, Caesars, and Wynn, clinching 32% wage hike

Approximately 40,000 non-gaming Strip employees have ratified new five-year collective bargaining agreements with three key casino and hospitality players in the US industry, MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment, and Wynn Resorts, culminating in an impressive cumulative 32% wage increase. This development brings an end to a prolonged contract stalemate that persisted for over seven months, averting the looming threat of a strike.

The newly endorsed agreements with these major entities have garnered commendation from Culinary Workers Local 226 Secretary-Treasurer Ted Pappageorge. He lauded the contracts as instrumental in “securing billions [of dollars] for working families in Nevada,” The Nevada Independent reported.

The ratified contracts also extend to members of Bartenders Local 165, an affiliated labor organization. According to Pappageorge, the terms include a 10% wage increase in the first year and a cumulative 32% raise throughout the contract’s duration, resulting in an average wage of $37 per hour. The total compensation for employees across the three companies is projected to reach $2 billion over the next five years.

We recognize the largest private employers in Nevada for doing the right thing and investing in the frontline workers who make the entire industry run successfully,” Pappageorge said in a statement.

Having expired at the end of May, the agreements were extended until September, prompting the union to call for a strike authorization vote, which received overwhelming approval. The ratification process unfolded with Caesars being the first to reach a tentative agreement on November 8. Subsequently, MGM Resorts’ 25,400 union employees ratified the contract on Tuesday, and Wynn Resorts’ 5,000 workers followed suit with a ratification vote on Wednesday.

While specific vote totals were not disclosed, the Culinary indicated that all three companies experienced a resounding 99% approval rate among voting members, the report said.

The unions remain engaged in negotiations for a new five-year deal with operators of 24 Strip, off-Strip, and downtown resorts, covering 15,000 hospitality workers. In addition to wage and benefit increases, the ratified contracts include provisions for workload reductions for guest room attendants, the reinstatement of daily hotel room cleaning, increased safety measures for workers, and expanded technology contract language.