A new report by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has deplored the woeful state of ethnic diversity in the Keystone State’s casinos. The report focused on the fact that the majority of employees of Pennsylvania’s 16 licensed casinos are mostly white, with the trend having remained unchanged for years. The reviewed period pertains to the 2020-21 fiscal year and takes historical data from previous reports and takes into consideration the impact COVID-19 has had on the job market.
A small change in the workforce makeup was noted during the pandemic when employment was more uncertain, but a self-correction occurred immediately after things started going back to normal. According to the state regulator’s research, out of 13,870 casino employees, around 61% are white, 15% are Black, and another 7% are Asian. The Hispanic workforce and other races make for just 4% of the people currently employed by the gambling industry.
There was a small uptick in the number of Asian workers, with 13% of staff members being of said origin during the brunt of the pandemic. Interestingly, that was also the case during the 2018-2019 fiscal year when Pennsylvania had more people involved in the sector, with some 16,717 people working in the industry. Asian represented 13% of the workforce, with 15% for Black members of the casino staff and 8% Hispanic.
The diversity report is not a standalone occurrence, but it has been published for the past 14 years in a bid to track equality in the gaming sector. Pennsylvania is obliged to do so under the Race Horse Development and Gaming Act. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board is committed to upholding regulatory compliance with the aforementioned act and to keeping a diverse and balanced workforce.
A Read of the Pennsylvania Casino Industry and Workforce
The goal is to not just pinpoint the workforce in licensed casinos but also to analyze key metrics, such as how many people are involved as well as available job positions.
Pennsylvania has examined comprehensive criteria to provide a full picture of the workforce. For example, for the 2020-21 fiscal year, the report found that 8,021 of the casino workforce were men. The remaining part of the workforce, or 5,849, as women.
The report further delved into individual numbers per establishment, noting mostly the same trend. Predominantly, the workforce consisted of male and white people. Some of the better-balanced workforces included the North Strabane casino, where 377 male and 279 female employees work.
Another property that has been able to balance its workforce in terms of gender is Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin in Fayette County, which has 56% male and 44% female workers.
At the same time, the report has not just focused on workforce diversity but also noted down that there have been $12.19 million charitable donations made by casinos in the 2020-21 fiscal year. However, this number was down from the $14.15 million made in charitable donations during the pre-pandemic fiscal year in 2018-2019, and even down from the pandemic period itself more or less, with the 2019-20 fiscal year leading to $13.2 million in contributions.
All of these donations have been directed at various food and shelter initiatives for those in need. The donations have gone to a number of initiatives, including medical research and treatment, education, disaster relief, public safety, and more.