A National Labor Relations Board judge has ordered Las Vegas’ Red Rock Resort to bargain with the Culinary and Bartenders Unions. The 138-page decision, issued last week by the U.S. Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Wedeking, is the latest court action in the yearslong dispute between both parties.
The judge has urged Red Rock to recognize and bargain with the Culinary Union based on its pre-election card majority, reports Las Vegas Review-Journal. The case stems from a complaint that accused Red Rock Resort operator Station Casinos of offering enhanced employee benefits to sway support ahead of a union election in December 2019, which ultimately failed.
“There is abundant evidence that the Company’s motive for developing, approving, and ultimately announcing the new benefits and programs at the Red Rock on December 10 and 11 was to undermine the Culinary Union campaign there,” the new ruling states, according to the cited news source.
Additionally, the order says Red Rock must stop threatening actions against employees. This includes telling them that selecting union representation would be futile and granting benefits to discourage them from supporting unionization, among other moves. Station Casinos has not yet commented on the issue.
Wedeking has also ordered the company to post a notice to employees in both English and Spanish about the National Labor Relations Board’s determination, and urged the business to read the notice aloud in an effort to make sure workers understand the court’s actions.
“Although an extraordinary remedy, a public reading of the notice is warranted and appropriate here given the serious nature and scope of Respondent Red Rock’s unlawful conduct and that most of its numerous unlawful statements and threats were made orally to employees in mandatory and captive-audience meetings by high-level managers,” the ruling reads.
The decision was applauded by the culinary union, which last Wednesday issued a statement in regards to the ruling. “This is yet another victory for workers who stood up and organized to have a union and a union contract at Red Rock Casino,” said Ted Pappageorge, Secretary-Treasurer for the Culinary Union.
The latest development in the ongoing conflict between the two parties builds upon a November 2021 decision by a panel of judges on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declining to overturn a previous lower court ruling that also required Station Casinos to bargain with the Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165.
“Just like the Ninth Circuit and Judge Navarro, the Administrative Law Judge also saw Station Casinos’ grant of benefits right before the election at Red Rock for what it was—a poorly disguised effort to discourage workers from unionizing,” added Pappageorge. “We commend Red Rock Casino workers for their continued courage and resilience in the face of the massive anti-union campaign that Station Casinos shamefully waged against them.”
Going forward, the Culinary Union stated it will continue to negotiate until it wins “a first union contract at Red Rock Casino that turns company promises into what is the standard in Las Vegas that the Culinary Union has secured over 87 years – strong union contract guarantees.”
Additionally, the union called on the company to stop appealing the case and to work to reach a fair contract. The Culinary Union has also said it continues to urge the state Gaming Control Board to investigate the operator for failing to adhere to federal labor law.