August 11, 2017
Casino workers vote overwhelmingly in favour of job action against Great Canadian Casinos
Workers at River Rock Casino this week voted 99.4 per cent in favour of a strike if necessary to back their contract proposals.
In nearly a year of negotiations between the BCGEU and the employer, Great Canadian Casinos, the two sides have failed to achieve a first collective agreement. It's not for a lack of effort on our part.
"We welcomed River Rock employees into our union knowing their working conditions needed to be improved and we were determined to achieve that," said BCGEU president Stephanie Smith. "We've spent many months now trying to move the employer on a number of key issues and it just hasn't happened. Strike mandates are always a last resort, but we've been left with no choice."
Participation in the strike vote demonstrated the determination of members to achieve a fair collective agreement. Nearly 90 per cent of the 977 BCGEU members at River Rock who were eligible to vote did so.
Mediated talks are expected to take place next week. If those fail, the prospect of job action will become more likely - a move that could cost Great Canadian Casinos millions in lost revenue.
"It's hard to feel confident that Great Canadian is bargaining in good faith. All we're asking for is a fair deal for workers. We urge the employer to come back to the bargaining table with a view to getting a deal done," said Smith.
The BCGEU is one of the largest and most diverse unions in British Columbia. We represent more than 73,000 members across all sectors of the economy, including over 3800 workers in casinos.
For more information contact: Bronwen Barnett, BCGEU Communications
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