Restaurant Workers at Citizens Inside Mandalay Bay are United for Respect
Workers at Citizens Kitchen & Bar which is inside Mandalay Bay have joined workers at Alexxa’s which is inside Paris Casino and workers from Eataly Las Vegas at Park MGM in the Culinary Union campaign to organize 10,000 non-union restaurant workers on the Las Vegas Strip.
Citizens is owned by SBE Entertainment Group, whose Chairman & CEO is Sam Nazarian.
Nazarian said in April 2020: “The lifeblood of what we do are the day in and day out employees that come to work, that clean, that cook, that prepare, that literally put their blood, sweat, and tears into hospitality” (Forbes).
Culinary Union contracts provide for fair wages, excellent benefits, and strong protections for rights on-the-job for 60,000 hospitality workers in Nevada.
Cooks, fountain workers, servers, bartenders, dishwashers, bussers, and hosts at Citizens are organizing to address the deep inequality inside Mandalay Bay: A Culinary Union Fountain Worker at Mandalay Bay earns up to $3.76 an hour more than a non-union Citizens Counter Worker while a Culinary Union Cook earns up to $6.32 more per hour than a non-union Citizens Cook.
“I am fighting to have a union so that to I can have good health insurance and a pension so that when I retire one day, I have more to depend than just social security. Right now, I don’t have health insurance for my three daughters and wife, only for myself through my job. My daughters have to get their health insurance through Medicaid. Workers like me, who don’t have a union, have lower wages – it would be fair if our wages were equal with the union workers in our casino. I have never been in the Culinary Union, but I know from my friends and family who are in the union that when workers are union, management can’t send you home if it is a slow day because the union protects workers in all areas at work. It is important that one job is enough so that I have enough time for my family.”
–David Reyes Ventura, a cook at Citizens for 12 years
“I am fighting to give my family a better life. Right now, I would have pay extra money to have my family on my health insurance, which is an added monthly cost and I already work two jobs to support my wife and daughter. It is hard having two jobs because I feel like I’m neglecting my family by spending more time at work than at home with them, but working a second job is the only way I am able to cover all the expenses that we have at home. Joining the Culinary Union would change my life because I could have economic stability with a higher salary and health insurance that would cover my wife and my daughter. With one good job, I would no longer have to work a second job out of necessity. One job should be enough to live.”
–Raymundo Lopez, a cook at Citizens at Mandalay Bay for 6 months