Thousands of Las Vegas casino workers will get panic buttons to report sexual harassers. These include housekeepers, bartenders and cocktail servers who work at some of the largest casinos in Las Vegas. They will soon carry panic buttons allowing them to call for help if they experience sexual harassment or abuse on the job.
MGM Resorts International and Caesar’s Entertainment agreed in contract negotiations with unions to give the panic buttons to workers who are vulnerable to sexual harassment. The labour contracts cover 36,000 service workers at the Bellagio, Mandalay Bay, the Mirage, MGM Grand, Caesar’s Palace, and other iconic casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, according to the Culinary Workers Union’s Local 226.
The panic button looks like a car remote, and when pressed, it alerts managers, who receive the name and room number of the employee who is signalling there’s trouble.
The recent focus on widespread sexual harassment has centred on Hollywood, but working-class women in the restaurant and hospitality industry have reported the highest rates of sexual harassment on the job. From 2005 to 2015, hotel and restaurant workers filed at least 5,000 sexual harassment complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission — more than representatives of any other industry, according to an analysis by the Centre for American Progress.
A growing number of hotels and casino resorts have begun using robots to deliver towels, toothpaste and other items to guests — an addition viewed primarily as a novelty to appeal to tech-loving travellers. However, as a result of the mass shooting last October in Las Vegas, some casinos are also deploying camera-wielding robots to enhance security in parking and valet areas as well as lobby spaces.
Similar security robots are already used in malls and sporting arenas. They can send live images of what they see to a security command post, where security experts can either direct the mobile robot to move closer to a suspicious person or object or simply zoom in with their high-definition cameras.
Sources: Casino World and Vox.com