New York casino workers rally against online gambling legislation

News Team 1 month ago
New York casino workers rally against online gambling legislation

Employees at Resorts World New York have voiced their opposition to the state’s proposed iGaming legislation. The workers, who are concerned about potential job losses and negative impacts on the industry, expressed their views in a letter to state senator Joseph Addabbo Jr., a long-time advocate for iGaming. The letter, signed by approximately 700 casino employees, was sent under the letterhead of the Hotel & Gaming Trades Council.

The workers criticized the proposed legislation, arguing that it would benefit a few companies seeking massive profits at the expense of the workers and the industry. The workers believe that the introduction of online betting would deter patrons from visiting physical casinos, thereby affecting various job sectors such as hospitality and maintenance. They argue that the money spent by online gamers would go directly into the pockets of gaming companies, rather than supporting the livelihoods of thousands of New Yorkers who contribute to the state’s gaming industry.

Bhav Tibrewal, the union’s political director, stated, “This iGaming proposal undercuts the best thing about casino gaming in New York: permanent, high-quality jobs that New Yorkers can live and retire on.”

iGaming and land-based casinos: complementary, not competitive

However, a recent study from Eilers & Krejcik Gaming (EKG) suggested that iGaming complements rather than competes with traditional land-based casino revenue streams. The study revealed a 2.44 percent quarterly increase in revenue for brick-and-mortar establishments following the implementation of online gaming regulations. It also highlighted the distinct demographic profile of iGaming players, who tend to be younger and more predominantly male compared to their counterparts at land-based casinos. Despite the workers’ concerns, feedback from casino operators indicated no significant cannibalisation effects on their traditional revenue streams as a result of the introduction of iGaming options. Resorts World New York City is expected to be one of the applicants for three downstate casino licenses. As the debate continues, the future of iGaming in New York remains uncertain.

What is clear, however, is that the voices of casino workers are being heard, and their concerns are being taken into consideration as the state navigates the complex landscape of online gambling legislation.

Stop Press: the next SiGMA Eurasia Summit takes place in Dubai between 25 – 27 FebruaryThe next SiGMA Africa Summit takes place in Cape Town between 11-13 March The fourth edition of SiGMA Eurasia will once again be held at the InterContinental Dubai Festival City. Held between the 25 and 27 February 2024, the summit provides invaluable networking opportunities for industry professionals, gain exposure to the latest tech and innovations in the sector, meet key decision makers, and gain insight into new marketsSiGMA Africa event kicks off in Cape Town, South Africa on the 11 March. Building on the success of its inaugural edition in Nairobi, Kenya, in January 2023, SiGMA Group recognizes the need to foster collaboration and innovation within the industry.

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