SEIU 888 won a decisive victory this week with the granting of exclusive bargaining rights for supervisory gaming agents and gaming agents of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.
SEIU 888 will represent all full-time and regular part-time employees who work as Supervisory Gaming Agents or Gaming Agents for the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.
“We knew from the start that the law was on our side and that gaming agents were entitled to proper representation by a union,” said SEIU 888 President Tom McKeever. “We applaud the Department’s decision and look forward to working with our brother and sisters at the Gaming Commission to ensure that they receive fair treatment and pay.”
In his decision, Philip T. Roberts, Director at the Department of Labor Relations, stated that “[SEIU 888], the Commission, and HRD all broadly agree that the Commission is properly categorized as an “other political subdivision,” and not the Commonwealth “acting through [Administration & Finance]” or a public employer otherwise uncovered under the Law.” As such, gaming agents are entitled to representation by SEIU 888. Though the Gaming Commission maintains broad power over its internal affairs, this decision ensures that gaming agents have access to the fair and comprehensive representation of SEIU 888 regarding collective bargaining.
SEIU will not represent any employees deemed managerial, confidential, or casual.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission was established in 2011 after the legislature approved expanded gaming. As a five-member, independent body, the Commission is responsible for developing and overseeing all aspects of expanded gaming facilities in the state. The board is composed of a Chair, appointed by the Governor; one member appointed by the Attorney General who must have a background in law enforcement; one member appointed by the Treasurer who must have a background in corporate finance and securities; and two additional members appointed by a majority vote of the first three members.
“As the Commonwealth continues to evolve its oversight over emerging industries, it is important that existing laws and bargaining rights remain,” added McKeever. “Just because something is new doesn’t mean that the law doesn’t apply to it. This is the type of strategic legal fight we are proud to wage on behalf of those we represent and for those who are entitled to representation.”