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Atlantic City Union: Keep Casino Drinks in Cups

27 June 2002

ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey – As reported by the Press of Atlantic City: "Cocktail servers met Wednesday with a representative of the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa to voice their opposition to a proposed change in casino regulations that would allow alcoholic beverages to be served in bottles and cans.

"Local 54 of the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union, citing safety risks and potential income losses for its members, has opposed the change to the regulations that would permit `open containers' on the city's casino floors.

"…`Every casino in the world - except those in Atlantic City - has this,' Borgata Senior Vice President Kevin Sullivan told about a dozen Local 54 members who attended the meeting, which was arranged by Gormley.

"…Union members told Sullivan they're worried that glass bottles could become weapons in the hands of disgruntled gamblers who may have had too much to drink. They also said they had concerns about potential income losses.

"Most Atlantic City casinos serve drinks in eight-ounce plastic cups, and providing bottles and cans that are much larger would hinder a server's ability to collect tips from gamblers, said Bob Middlesworth, Local 54's chief arbitration officer. He said the weight of tray loaded with bottles would limit the number of patrons a waitress could serve at one time.

"…But Sullivan said he believes cocktail servers will receive better tips if they're permitted to provide bottles of beer to patrons. He said the company's research has found that gamblers - men in particular - prefer to be served bottled beer.

"…Cocktail servers said they also are worried that the added weight of beer bottles on their trays would lead to more injuries at work…"

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