NATIONAL GAMBLING IMPACT STUDY COMMISSION
MR. DELORGE: Thank you. Good afternoon. My name is Richard Delorge, and seated to my left is my attorney, Edward Scallon, of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
I am a former employee of the Foxwoods Resort Casino, I held a position as a tribal gaming inspector up until the third week of January 1996. Upon reporting to work that week, I was confronted by a battery of questions by three of my superiors over four days. Being a former police officer, this line of questioning raised my suspicions. For my superiors to ask these questions, they would have had to surreptitiously listen to conversations on my home phone.
This was a grave disrespect of the sanctity of my family's privacy. Knowing my superiors had a voice in the operation of the disciplinary review board I knew there was no provision for me to procure assistance in dealing with this monolithic structure.
With no other option, I sought the help of an outside entity. With the assistance of the FBI and an investigation by the Connecticut State Police, one person was brought to justice, a neighbor who was a relative of one of my superiors was arrested and convicted of eavesdropping. My superior and his third in command hastily resigned, lending suspicion to the possibility they were involved.
The net results for me were I lost my job, I am unemployable in this field and I still remain fearful from the experience. It has been two years since my troubles began and after many court appearances, many dollars spent, nothing has been resolved.
I continue to fight because I know this is not about race, creed, color or sovereignty, I myself am part Native American. This is about someone violating my right to privacy in my own home. My background as a United States Marine war veteran doesn't allow me to quit, but instead it makes me angrier. And it drives me to enlighten workers that no matter how powerful anyone is, we are guaranteed our rights under the Constitution, as Americans.
I am one isolated case of many from Foxwoods. All of my strife caused could have been avoided if a fairer mechanism had been in place. Even most recently it was reported that the tribal court handed down a decision stating that Foxwoods' review board, who makes recommendations on firing workers, are depriving the workers there of their due process. This confusion adds to the atmosphere of uncertainty the worker encounters when they are put in this situation.
Most workers fall by the wayside because of lack of resources needed to fight this unfair system. It is my humble opinion that the worker must have someone to turn to. A fairer mechanism such as a third party entity, is needed to assist the worker in ensuring that their rights are in accordance with fair and equitable due process.
In parting, a word of caution. Next time you are on a portable or cellular phone, ask yourself, is anyone taping me? I know I do now, and I'm sure Newt Gingrich does.
MR. DELORGE: Thank you.
CHAIRPERSON JAMES: Thank you.