Citizens For the Common Good
Fall River, MA
GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE JILL STEIN TO SPEAK AGAINST CASINOS
FALL RIVER, Massachusetts—Jill Stein, Green-Rainbow candidate for governor, will be speaking about casinos as jobs killers—and how we can create better, more secure jobs across the Commonwealth—on Monday, August 2, 2010, at 7 p.m. at Calvary Temple, 4321 North Main St, Fall River, MA.
The event is open to the public and press. Ms. Stein will respond to questions from the audience following her talk.
Anti-casino bumper stickers will be available for free and light refreshments will be served.
Stein, the only candidate for governor who is publicly opposed to expanded gaming, released a statement on July 30, 2010, calling on the Massachusetts Legislature to call a halt to the push for casino gambling in Massachusetts in order to give the state time to assess new developments indicating that the casino economy is heading for trouble. Says Stein, “a bad idea just got a lot worse” with Congress moving to legalize online gambling, a move that could undercut revenues for any casinos built in Massachusetts.
“Beacon Hill is showing a decided lack of business sense by putting on the rose-colored glasses and making a bet without considering the risks.” Stein noted that even without the competition of legal online gambling, casino states such as Nevada have been suffering in the current economic downturn. “The casino industry is extremely vulnerable to downturns in the economy, because people gamble less when the economy is soft. Nevada—which is loaded with casinos—has the highest unemployment rate in the nation according to June figures. They are suffering a jobless rate of 14% while Massachusetts is around 9.2%. Nevada also leads the nation in foreclosures and bankruptcies. And Atlantic City, with 11 casinos, has a jobless rate higher than Boston. Do we really want to emulate these economies? Let’s think twice before going down that road.”
Among the other risks of casinos, Stein noted that “Casino revenues can take a nose-dive if neighboring states open up their own casinos. And the destination casinos are vulnerable to spikes in the price of gasoline. We could easily find ourselves being held hostage to a network of casinos that are in danger of going under.”
“We know that casinos are net job killers. It’s been calculated that each slot machine pulls enough money out of the economy to kill one job. So once we build casinos, pink slips will be handed out all over Massachusetts. The casinos will concentrate a few jobs in the casino communities, but not enough to prevent a net job loss statewide. And if the casinos begin to fail, we could have a nightmare of unemployment.”
Stein noted that the state of New Hampshire commissioned an objective study of potential casinos in New Hampshire and found that the net benefits of opening casinos was very questionable. “Beacon Hill hasn’t permitted such a study to be conducted for Massachusetts. They are afraid of what the answer might be. They have just adopted a pro-casino mantra, and counted upon keeping the microphone away from anyone who might ask them tough questions. The House didn’t even hold public hearings on their casino bill. This lack of scrutiny is a prescription for making a big mistake.”
“The politicians are saying that casinos are not a complete solution, as if that is a wise attitude. It’s time for them to admit the truth: Casinos are not part of any solution. To create the sound, sustainable economy of the future, we need to make sure that casinos are never built in Massachusetts. We can create better jobs, and more secure jobs, by investing in the green economy of the future, and taking care of our small businesses. The last thing we need is a chain of job-killing casinos that make Massachusetts look more like Nevada.”
For information, please contact Stefani Koorey or Al Lima at email@example.com or at 508-493-9304 for further information.