Red Rock Resort ordered by judge to bargain with the Culinary and Bartenders unions

The Red Rock Hotel and Casino in Summerlin. (Las Vegas Review-Journal, file)

A National Labor Relations Board judge has ordered Red Rock Resort to bargain with the Culinary and Bartenders Unions, the latest court action in a yearslong dispute.

A 138-page decision, issued Tuesday by the U.S. Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Wedekind, says Red Rock must recognize and bargain with the Culinary Union based on its pre-election card majority.

The case stems from a complaint that accused Station Casinos, which operates Red Rock Resort and other local-oriented casinos in Southern Nevada, of using an offer of enhanced employee benefits to sway support ahead of an upcoming union election in December 2019 at the property. The vote ultimately failed.

In November 2021, a panel of judges on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declined to overturn a previous lower court ruling that also required Station Casinos to bargain with the Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165.

Wedekind’s order says Red Rock also must stop threatening actions like telling employees that selecting union representation would be futile, granting employee benefits to discourage them from supporting unionization and using employee images on a company anti-union website, if they have not already done so.

“There is abundant evidence … that the Company’s motive for developing, approving, and ultimately announcing the new benefits and programs at the Red Rock on December 10 and 11 was to undermine the Culinary Union campaign there,” The ruling states.

Executives with Station Casinos, owned by parent company Red Rock Resorts, did not respond to requests for comment.

The Culinary Union on Wednesday applauded the court’s action and called on the company to stop appealing the case and instead work to reach a fair contract.

Wedekind ordered the company to post a notice to the employees, in English and Spanish, about the National Labor Relations Board’s determination. The judge said the company should further read the notice aloud to make sure employees understand the court’s actions.

“Although an extraordinary remedy, a public reading of the notice is warranted and appropriate here given the serious nature and scope of Respondent Red Rock’s unlawful conduct and that most of its numerous unlawful statements and threats were made orally to employees in mandatory and captive-audience meetings by high-level managers,” according to the ruling.

McKenna Ross is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Contact her at mross@reviewjournal.com. Follow @mckenna_ross_ on Twitter.