Unifor and Gateway Casinos & Entertainment have been involved in an important conversation directly affecting the individuals associated with casino operation. Ontario and British Columbia casino staff members associated with the labor union will now get their benefits extended, as the two parties return to previously established operations agreement. It aims to benefit all parties involved in it.
Following months of discussions and negotiation, the labor union representing thousands of casino workers achieved its goal for protecting the people relying on it. Ever since mid-March, brick-and-mortar facilities across the Canadian provinces had to close for operation. The mandatory lockdown aims to protect players and casino staff members. During this period, the people relying on regular payments had to receive regular benefits payments.
Labor Union Negotiates
The last days of June saw a shift in the agreement directly affecting the people associated with casino operation. Gateway Casinos & Entertainment made it clear that it wants to end the employee benefits payments at the end of June. At that point, the casino operator had not issued information regarding the potential reopening of in-person gambling venues on a national scale.
Unifor Local 1090 was quick to seek protection for the unionized individuals part of the structure and the next step would be a grievance for a violation of the Employment Standards Act against the casino operator. Jerry Dias, Unifor National President, pointed out that the past four months have taken their toll on the individuals associate with the casino industry of Canada. Thousands of people and their relatives have felt the impact already.
The labor union wanted to make it possible or the people working at casino locations to feel like they can rely on their employer and receive the support in these uncertain times. When it comes to Ontario, the casino venues affected by the recent negotiations are Cascades Chatham, Starlight Point Edward, Gateway Casinos Sarnia, Gateway Casinos Sudbury, Gateway Casinos Innisfil Security, as well as Centralized Technical Operation.
Upcoming Months of Operation
British Columbia gaming operation has also been included in the recent conversations regarding the extension of benefit payments. Unionized workers associated with Chances Kamloops, Chances Williams Lake, as well as the Grand Villa Burnaby Surveillance are going to continue benefitting from the existing agreement. Individuals working at the casino venues are also going to enjoy improved job security down the road.
Unifor has also worked in collaboration with the casino operator for the utilization of Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. With its help, casino workers will be able to elect a retroactive paid leave which is then going to be partially funded by the aforementioned subsidy. This would be a useful feature when it comes to the four-month lockdown.
Tony Santo, Chief Executive Officer of Gateway Casinos, also expressed his contentment with the turn of events, as the two parties were able to negotiate the most appropriate conditions for future collaboration. Gateway Casinos locations are currently preparing for the official reopening in accordance with the provincial health recommendations.