Workers at the Graton Resort & Casino in Sonoma County, California are now members of UNITE HERE, following an organizing drive to raise standards for workers in the region’s lucrative tourism industry.
The vote by 600 janitors, waiters, cooks, and gaming workers was run under an agreement between UNITE HERE and the Graton Federated Tribes, which allowed workers to choose freely whether to become union members without interference from their employer.
In results certified by an arbitrator on July 18, eligible employees voted 70% in favor of joining UNITE HERE Local 2850.
“Tourists spend a lot of money at casinos and restaurants here in Sonoma, but often the workers are living in poverty. We’re joining the union because we want to turn that around,” said Graton porter Kathy Winifield.
Read more in the Press Democrat: Graton Casino Workers Vote To Join Union