NATIONAL GAMBLING IMPACT STUDY COMMISSION
MS. DANIEL: Good afternoon. My name is Beth Daniel, and I'm the Associate Relations Manager at Grand Casino in Tunica, Mississippi. I've lived in north Mississippi for 36 years, and I've been working for Grand Casino now for 17 months. I'm a success story.
I began as a part-time, temporary associate, and I've worked my way to the position that I now hold, and I'm not the only success story at Grand Casino.
I'd like to tell you about a young lady who was a single parent and had two young children. When she came to us to put in her application, she was making only $16,000 a year at a local furniture company. She now holds a position of responsibility at Grand Casino, and she's able now to pay her bills. She no longer has to go home wondering if her utilities will have been disconnected while she was working. She is also a success story, and there's many, many more.
We employ more than 2,800 associates at Grand Casino. Most of these associates were unemployed or under-employed until the gaming -- until gaming came to our area. Grand Casino gave them the opportunity to work and to support their families with dignity.
Grand Casino also provided them with affordable health insurance and with free life insurance, and they are also given on-the-job training. For those associates who would like to go on to bigger and better things, we provide training that allows them to learn to set and meet personal goals.
We also have a tuition reimbursement program for those associates who would like to soar to greater heights through education.
Grand Casino cares about the community. Only four months after opening, our associates raised over $80,000 for the United Way program, and right now we have more, other extensive community programs in the making.
The positive effects of gaming in our community have been great. Just a few years ago Tunica County, Mississippi, was the poorest county in the nation, but you don't have to take my word for it. I urge you; I invite you to come to Tunica County and see for yourselves, see all of the changes that have been made.
Most of my friends or many of my friends and my associates and I can attribute much of our success to the gaming industry, and particularly to Grand Casino.
CHAIRPERSON JAMES: Thank you.