Sad news for Donald Trump‘s former beloved jewel and even sadder news for a group of workers: The Trump Taj Mahal Casino (which is now owned by Carl Icahn), a fixture of the Atlantic City boardwalk since 1990 that Trump once called “the eighth wonder of the world,” will be closing its doors for good after Labor Day. Like many Atlantic City properties over the past several years, the casino has apparently been hemorrhaging money for quite some time. Another factor in the decision, however, was a lengthy employee strike which is about to become the longest in the city’s history.
Workers in the Local 54 of the Unite-HERE union walked off their jobs on July 1, and on Thursday the strike will have lasted 35 days — exceeding a 2004 strike in which was waged against seven casinos. The closing will likely cost over a thousand housekeepers, bellmen, bartenders, cocktail servers their jobs.
“Currently the Taj is losing multi-millions a month, and now with this strike we see no path to profitability,” [Tony Rodio, President and Chief Executive Officer of Tropicana Entertainment] said in the statement. “Unfortunately, we’ve reached the point where we have will to have to close the Taj after Labor Day weekend and intend to send WARN notices to before this weekend.”
As you can imagine, the union isn’t very accepting of this news. Here’s an excerpt from Local 54 President Bob McDevitt’s statement off of the Local 54 union’s website via Press of Atlantic City.
“For a few million bucks he [Carl Icahn] could have had labor peace and a content workforce, but instead he’d rather slam the door shut on these long-term workers just to punish them and attempt to break their strike,”
Not to compare the two things, because nothing touches the sadness of the loss being felt by those who are now losing their jobs because of this closure, but I’m personally depressed by this since the Taj Mahal is where, eight years ago next month, my now-husband and I shared our first kiss. Guess we’ll have to find somewhere else to have our anniversary. The end of an era.