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Mirage workers, preparing for closure, connect with job-seeking resources

Updated July 1, 2024 - 5:21 pm

As an iconic Strip hotel-casino prepares for its mid-July closure, thousands of its employees are planning their next career steps — some with the help of state and union support.

Workers at The Mirage are connecting with new jobs, unemployment benefits, budgeting classes and more through the state’s Rapid Response program.

Administered by the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, the employment support is meant to help businesses and workers following a layoff or closure. The agency says it coordinates timely assistance to help employees find new jobs.

“Our goal is to make sure The Mirage staff feel supported during this time,” DETR Director Christopher Sewell said in a news release about the program’s deployment.

Programming includes information on budget planning and health insurance options and access to skills upgrading and job training. It also includes workshops on networking, resume writing, interviewing and other skills. Mirage employees have most commonly used the resume writing workshop and unemployment insurance information sessions.

Services have been offered on-site more than a dozen times and exist virtually, a DETR spokeswoman said. As of Monday, 315 have attended the educational programs while 323 have attended the resource fair.

Job fairs at Mirage

Additionally, Culinary Local 226 set up rapid response fairs at the property and the Culinary Academy of Las Vegas for its roughly 1,700 members. They include resource connection to DETR, job fairs and Culinary’s legal, training, health and pension benefits.

Full-time Culinary members are eligible for a severance of $2,000 for every service year worked, union and resort officials said. The union negotiated the terms of the severance during city-wide contract negotiations in 2023, which included some lesser amounts in exchange for recall rights and retaining seniority when a property reopens.

Amalia Moreland, a uniform attendant of 35 years, said she was pleased with the severance package – and the union severance benefits because they give options to help find work or to support retirement.

“Nothing is forever, is what I think,” Moreland said. “They can do whatever with the casino. But we need a union because we have too many young people and they’re planning to come back.”

That package is part of the $80 million in severance packages that Hard Rock International, the operators of The Mirage, expect to pay about 3,350 workers. Workers not under a collective bargaining agreement will receive two weeks’ pay for every eligible service year, capped at $20,000.

Operators will close the property on July 17 for three years to revamp it into Hard Rock Las Vegas, complete with a 660-foot-tall hotel tower shaped like a guitar along Las Vegas Boulevard.

Contact McKenna Ross at mross@reviewjournal.com. Follow @mckenna_ross_ on X.

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