For years now, the Nevada-based Culinary Workers Union Local 226 has failed in its attempts to unionize the Station group of hotel-casinos in Las Vegas. Station Casinos is owned by Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta, who are also majority owners of the Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC).
Although the UFC has nothing to do with culinary workers, and indeed provides a vast amount of union work at arenas across the nation, and the world, it has for years been a target of the union.
A stock tactic the union employs is to create a fake organization, purporting to represent a decent group with decent intents, that is in reality something very different. The group does not care a whit about MMA figures cursing in media or any of the other covers they hid behind. They just want to fill union coffers.
Anti-UFC steps the union has taken include:
•Backed anti-MMA legislation in New York;
•Called on the Federal Trade Commission to investigate UFC parent company Zuffa;
•Launched a website complaining that UFC President Dana White swears a lot;
•Launched an online petition calling on FOX to back away from a deal to broadcast UFC events;
•Demanded Anheuser-Busch pull its Bud Light sponsorship of the UFC;
•Supported some wacky MMA legislation in California;
•Demanded the Marine Corps cut ties with the UFC;
•Asked FOX to remove Jeremy Stephens and Abel Trujillo from the UFC on FOX 5 fight for having a record.
•Petitioned Toys”R”Us CEO to remove all UFC related toys from his stores
Where organized labor once lifted millions of exploited workers into the middle class, the Culinary Union is now spending member dues to accuse Dana White of using swear words, and Joe Rogan of calling someone ‘cunty’ on the UG. And the union has no issue – what so ever – with the UFC.
Further, this is not an action undertaken to save opressed workers from exploitation and degradation – Station Casinos was repeatedly named one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For.”
The logic behind the actions is difficult to fathom. The majority of steps taken thus far are comical. The main exception is supporting anti MMA efforts in New York, which hurts fans and fighters, the economy of New York state, and every employee at Madison Square Garden, a union shop.
Now, the UFC is striking back with a site of their own site TheTruthAboutCulinary226.com. Tellingly, the UFC is open about it’s ownership of the site, and didn’t create some fictitious front group, as the Culinary Union has done over a dozen times now.
The site explains why the UFC is being targeted:
The Culinary Union has targeted Station Casinos because the company refuses to agree to a “card check” process whereby the Culinary Union may become the representative of its employees without being elected as such through a secret ballot election. Rather than simply following the secret ballot election process that U.S. federal law provides, the Culinary Union’s management has instead waged a dishonest campaign to pressure Station Casinos to capitulate to its demands. As part of that campaign, the Culinary Union has been engaging in harassment tactics that target all of the business interests of the Fertittas, including Station Casinos and the UFC.