Culinary Union sets nationwide pickets demanding action from Palms Casino partners





Tuesday, March 19, 2019


Bethany Khan: ▪ (702) 387-7088 

Culinary Union sets nationwide pickets demanding action from Palms Casino partners

Las Vegas, Nevada – Supporters of workers organizing at the Palms Casino Resort Las Vegas will picket business partners of the Palms and its owners to demand the Las Vegas casino respect its employees’ democratic vote to unionize. Workers at the casino hotel voted by 84% to unionize in an election conducted by the federal government April 2018. The Palms, a Station Casinos property, has refused to recognize the result of the election.

“We voted to unionize because we want the same standard as unionized Strip workers – fair wages, job security, great health benefits said Eduardo Truebas Martinez, a cook at the Palms A.Y.C.E. Buffet. It’s time for the company to do the right thing and negotiate!”

Federal labor law allows “secondary” picketing for the purpose of making an employer honor the choice of workers to unionize through a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) election.

The first round of these picketing actions will target celebrity chefs such as Marc Vetri and Michael Symon as well as America First Action Inc., a leading pro-Trump super PAC to which the owners of Palms had written large checks instead of paying for higher wages and better benefits for their employees. Other picket targets will include the Michelin-starred Tim Ho Wan Dim Sum restaurant in New York; REVOLVE, a private equity backed e-tailer; partners of Fertitta Capital, the private investment vehicle of Palms’ owners; and the law firm who worked on the recent purchase of mega-yachts by Palms’ owners. The picketers will demand that these individuals and organizations use their business relationship with Palms’ decisionmakers to convince the employer to honor the Union’s certification and start negotiating.     

“The federal government has certified our union as the bargaining representative after a free and fair election in which workers voted overwhelmingly in favor of representation,” said Geoconda Argüello-Kline, Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union. “We call on the Palms to begin contract negotiations immediately.”

In addition to the Palms, Station Casinos is also refusing to recognize the union election result at Green Valley Ranch in Henderson, Nevada. It has chosen to engage in a time-consuming, expansive litigation via a multi-stage appeal process through the NLRB and the courts. Station Casinos is the operating subsidiary of Red Rock Resorts, Inc. (NASDAQ: RRR). It is controlled by billionaires Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta.

Initial pickets will be conducted by the following UNITE HERE affiliates: Local 2 in San Francisco; Local 25 and Local 23 in the Washington D.C. metro area; Local 5 in Hawai’i; Local 100 in New York; Local 33 in New Haven; Local 24 in Cleveland; Local 274 in Philadelphia; and others. 




Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165, Nevada affiliates of UNITE HERE, represent 60,000 workers in Las Vegas and Reno, including at most of the casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas. UNITE HERE represents 280,000 workers in gaming, hotel, and food service industries in North America. 

The Culinary Union has a diverse membership -- approximately 55% women, 54% Latinx, 19% White, 15% Asian, 10% Black, and less than 1% Indigenous Peoples — and consists of guest room attendants, cocktail and food servers, porters, bellmen, cooks, bartenders, laundry and kitchen workers. The Culinary Union has been fighting for fair wages, job security, and good health benefits for workers in Nevada for 84 years. / @Culinary226

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