Detroit casino workers approve strike authorization at three casinos

(Reuters) -Workers at three Detroit casinos have voted in favor of authorizing a strike, if necessary, the United Auto Workers (UAW) union and Teamsters said on Saturday.

The UAW, a member of the Detroit Casino Council (DCC) representing workers at the MGM Grand Detroit, Hollywood at Greektown and MotorCity casinos, said workers voted 99% “yes” on Friday to authorize a strike at all three locations if a new contract agreement isn’t reached.

The DCC could call for strikes as soon as mid-October when contracts expire, it said in a statement.

Teamsters added that authorization allows Teamsters Local 1038 and four unions representing more than 3,500 workers to call a strike should MGM Grand Detroit, Hollywood at Greektown, and MotorCity casinos fail to deliver fair contracts by Oct. 16.

The Detroit Casino Council is made up of five unions representing casino employees, including UNITE HERE Local 24, UAW, Teamsters Local 1038, Operating Engineers Local 324, and the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters.

The announcement comes as labor unions take advantage of low unemployment to push for higher pay and better working conditions in their talks over new labor agreements.

About 25,000 UAW members working at the Detroit Three automakers – Ford, General Motors and Chrysler parent Stellantis, are already on strike. That has led to the shutdown of five plants, two at General Motors, one at Stellantis and two at Ford.

(Reporting by Jyoti Narayan and Gursimran Kaur; Editing by Kirsten Donovan and Andrea Ricci)