Massive Change on the Horizon: Are Robots Coming to Replace the Jobs of Casino Workers?

There is mounting concern among workers across various industries about the potential automation of jobs in the coming decades. A prediction by Goldman Sachs has stated that 300 million full-time jobs could be automated through AI, leading to fears about the future of jobs for writers, cooks, accountants, coders, and even casino workers.

The automation of jobs is not a new phenomenon, with robots already playing a vital role in many industries. From car factories to Amazon warehouses, robots are being used to carry out tasks with a high level of accuracy. The recent CES 2024 convention in Las Vegas showcased machines that can prepare, cook, and deliver food, sparking concerns among casino workers about the future of their jobs.

Unions are already taking action to address the potential impact of automation on jobs. The Culinary Workers Union, representing about 40,000 casino employees in Las Vegas, has negotiated new contracts with provisions for job training related to emerging technology and protections in cases of job losses due to new technology adoption.

Some Las Vegas casinos have already begun using robots in different aspects of their businesses, such as preparing and serving drinks, security patrolling, and self-check-in for guests. It has been estimated that between 38% and 65% of Southern Nevada jobs could be automated by 2035, raising concerns about the potential impact on the customer experience.

Despite the concerns, automation could also bring about increased profitability for casinos. The ability to replace non-customer-facing roles with machines can lead to substantial savings for casinos, as robots do not require health or retirement benefits, can work longer hours, and do not go on strike.

However, it is not all doom and gloom for casino workers. There will always be a need for the human touch in the service industry, and many workers do not oppose some level of automation as it could lead to a lighter workload. Some concerns remain, such as the potential for underage individuals to bypass robot bartender systems to purchase alcohol and the ability of bots to identify when to cut off someone who has had too many drinks.

In conclusion, the rise of automation in the casino industry poses both challenges and opportunities for workers. While the potential for job losses is a concern, there is also the possibility for increased efficiency and profitability. Ultimately, a balanced approach that takes into account the needs of both workers and businesses will be essential in navigating the changing landscape of the industry.

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