NEJB members are speaking out about the importance of good union jobs in the city of Worcester. Massachusetts’ recently expanded gaming legislation allows for three regionally located resort casinos and one slot parlor in Massachusetts. Currently one development company has submitted a proposal to build a slot parlor and hotel in Worcester. In order to qualify for a gaming license through the Massachusetts Gaming Commission applicants must enter in to a “host community agreement” that addresses issues of importance around the building and operating of such a gaming facility. Ultimately the decision to authorize a gaming facility will be put to the voters through municipal/town refernda.
In Worcester, Rush Street Gaming is proposing a slot facility in the Green Island area of the city. Unfortunately at Rush Street Gaming’s other facilities throughout the country workers are being denied a fair process to organize a union. Rush Street has a track record of failing to keep its promises to the communities in which it operates casinos. UNITE HERE and members of NEJB locals 313, 75, 66L in Worcester have been attending city council meetings to stress that if gaming jobs are coming to Worcester they must be good, union jobs that strengthen our community. Recently David Kenney of Local 66L Ameripride Laundry spoke before the Worcester City Council: “We’re not for our against the slot parlor in Worcester. What we are for is good union jobs with a voice in the workplace.” Members stressed the importance of union jobs in helping improve the economy of Worcester. “We want to bring Worcester up, not bring it down” said Barbara Breaux, NEJB executive board member and Local 313 TJMaxx member. Concerned NEJB members and Worcester residents will be calling on the City Manager to negotiate a host community agreement that includes strong protections for workers.