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Station Casinos unit files NLRB complaint over union vote

Updated November 17, 2017 - 2:22 pm

A subsidiary of Station Casinos has filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board alleging unfair campaign practices by the UNITE HERE-affiliated Culinary and Bartenders’ unions during a Nov. 8-9 representation vote at Green Valley Ranch Resort.

The complaint, filed Tuesday, said union representatives “interfered with employees’ rights to refrain from voting, (were) intimidating and coercive, destroyed the requirement that their vote be in-secret, voluntary or anonymous and demonstrated that the union was monitoring whether they voted.”

Union officials said the results of the vote were clear and that Station has said numerous times that it would abide by an employee vote.

“Green Valley Ranch workers voted by a landslide of 78 percent yes to unionize,” said Geoconda Arguello-Kline, secretary-treasurer for the Culinary Union.

“The vote was a clear mandate and the Culinary Union will proceed with contract negotiations,” Arguello-Kline said Friday. “We urge Station Casinos to recognize their employees’ voices and votes and negotiate in good faith.”

But the filing urged the board to set aside the election results and declare them null and void.

“We have always said that our team members deserve the respect and privacy that comes with the process of a lawful secret ballot election run by the NLRB and that is still our position,” Station President Richard Haskins said in a statement released Friday. “We recently filed objections to the conduct of the representation election held last week at Green Valley Ranch Resort. The Culinary Union’s behavior in connection with the election was improper and unacceptable, rendering it impossible to conduct a free and fair secret-ballot election as required by law, to the detriment of our team members.”

Green Valley Ranch became the fourth Station property to unionize since 2014. Employees at the tribal Graton Resort & Casino in Rohnert Park, California, voted in July 2014 for representation and signed a contract more than a year later.

Boulder Station employees voted 355-177 to approve representation in early September 2016, but Palace Station workers rejected the union 266-262 a month later.

The Culinary Union filed an unfair labor practices complaint with the NLRB that led to a settlement with the company. Station executives at the time said they agreed to settle to avoid a protracted dispute.

The Green Valley Ranch Resort vote that ended late Nov. 9 involved Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165 with 78 percent of the 730 workers voting favoring representation.

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on Twitter.

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