“In every community where we operate, Delaware North is committed to being good corporate citizens and impactful neighbors. We prioritize the health and wellbeing of our associates, guests, partners and the environment, and we hold ourselves to the highest standards of ethics.” – Lou Jacobs, CEO
Reducing Resource Consumption and Waste
GreenPath®, Delaware North’s stewardship program, ensures the Company carefully manages its environmental impact. GreenPath uses a formal process to plan, implement and measure meaningful progress. Going beyond compliance with applicable requirements, GreenPath priorities include natural resource protection, sustainable sourcing, zero waste, water conservation, energy efficiency, meeting LEED standards for facilities, renewable energy and reducing impacts from greenhouse gas emissions. The Company has a waste diversion program to promote a circular economy and reduce landfill impacts.
In responsible sourcing, Delaware North prefers products with credible certifications and eco-labels, both for food and operational supplies such as single-use products, cleaning chemicals, paper, equipment and others. Seafood is sourced from sustainable sources defined by programs such as the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Sustainable Fish Cities and U.S. operations source eggs from cage-free hens. The Company also encourages suppliers to source products that advance the sustainability and traceability of its supply chain and aligns with the U.S. Green Building Council’s Total Resource Use and Efficiency (TRUE) rating system to promote zero waste.
The Company is working to eliminate use of Styrofoam, is eliminating PFAS in its products, and has committed to source 100 percent of single-use packaging products in the U.S. from materials that are recyclable, renewable, compostable or contain post-consumer content by 2025. In 2018, the Company launched “The Last Straw” campaign to cut down on the estimated 38.1 million plastic drinking straws the Company uses each year.
Delaware North has a strong commitment to animal welfare as part of a more sustainable food supply. The Company supports humane practices throughout an animal’s lifecycle to promote health and welfare aligned with the Farm Animal Welfare Committee’s Five Freedoms. Animal welfare issues include confinement, physical alterations, the use of antibiotics and hormones, living conditions, transportation and processing.
Since July 2021, the Company’s U.S. operations source 90 percent of shell eggs and liquid eggs from cage-free hens. For broiler chickens, the Company has committed to meet the Global Animal Partnership’s standards in the U.S. and Canada by 2024. Compliance will be monitored by a third-party auditor. For pork, the Company is eliminating gestation crates from the supply chain and sourcing pork products from animals raised in group-housed systems; for veal, confinement crates are being eliminated from the supply chain.
Beyond this, the Company promotes the use of plant-based proteins and vegan and vegetarian items on its menus, including through its “Dirty Beets” brand.Learn More
Strengthening Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Strengthening Employee DEI
Delaware North continues to evolve on its journey to nurture and advance efforts of inclusion, equity and belonging across a diverse workforce. The Company’s focus areas include:
- Sharing knowledge and raising cultural awareness and competence.
- Providing an open forum for the exchange of diverse ideas.
- Serving as a source of reciprocal mentoring and professional development opportunities.
- Disseminating best practices to attract, develop, engage, advance and retain a diverse, high-performing workforce.
- Fostering an inclusive culture where all employees are fully engaged and can contribute to their full potential.
- Growing reach beyond the Company’s scope and into each employee’s day-to-day commitments.
Delaware North developed its core values – Lean Forward, Come Together, Stand Up, Do Right and Think Guest as the foundation of how the Company behaves. To better bring these values to life, in early 2018, a first phase of Business Resource Groups (BRGs) were founded on the principle of being employee-driven, grassroots networks to support the Company’s objectives through networking and collaborating. The first four Business Resource Groups (BRGs) established were:
- Emerging Leaders
- Administrative Support Services Enrichment Team
- Women of Delaware North
- Innovators and Creative Problem Solvers
These groups are designed to foster networking both within the organization and the broader community. BRGs encourage career development and empower employees, encouraging personal and professional growth and a more diverse organization.
Investing in Communities
Addressing Critical Community Needs
Delaware North makes direct investments in health and safety, education and workforce readiness to improve its communities, including its community of associates, the communities across the globe where it operates, and its hometown community in Buffalo, N.Y.
Delaware North also invites its guests and associates to participate in charitable giving and recently launched the Game Changer program. Casino patrons can donate uncashed ticket vouchers, and associates can make donations to a fundraising campaign for organizations who positively impact the health of our local communities. Two recent examples of donations include Delaware North’s Southland Casino Racing in West Memphis, Ark., which donated $47,000 to The Children’s Advocacy Center of Eastern Arkansas (CACEA) in October 2021, and Wheeling Island Hotel- donated $5,402 to Madison Elementary School in September 2021.
Delaware North’s Gaming culinary teams use technology to monitor and eliminate food waste. In 2019, the Gaming division donated more than 22,000 pounds of food to community members in need.
Supporting Crittenden County, Arkansas
Delaware North, through its Southland Casino Racing operation in West Memphis, Ark., seeks to make high-impact contributions throughout Crittenden County, Ark. The county has a poverty level that is higher than the national average, and Delaware North recognizes that as one of the region’s largest businesses it has a responsibility to invest in the local community to help improve outcomes in identified priority areas.
Notable investments include a $1 million donation to ASU Mid-South, a public, two-year institution, to prepare students for careers in the hospitality industry through the Jeremy M. Jacobs Hospitality Program. Mid-South offers a low cost of tuition and schedule and curriculum that are accessible for students for whom a traditional four-year college is not a viable option.
Since the program began in 2013, 323 students have enrolled in courses. As of spring 2021, Mid-South has awarded 170 degrees/certificates through the program.
The Jacobs Program also established the Delta Cuisine Food Incubator and Shared Commercial Kitchen to assist local culinary entrepreneurs to test and launch small businesses. The program provides access to kitchen infrastructure and expert technical assistance at a significant cost savings to the entrepreneurs. By conducting regular check-ins with the leadership of ASU Mid-South, the Company learns about evolving needs and unexpected outcomes and adjusts its charitable strategy for the future.Learn More
Investing in Research and Partnering with Advocacy Groups
Awareness and inclusion of responsible gaming practices is part of all Company marketing and communications planning across its digital and physical businesses. Delaware North is a sustaining supporter of the National Council on Problem Gambling and partner of the AGA’s Have a Game Plan.® Bet Responsibly.™ public service campaign.
Through a new joint venture digital gaming platform, Gamewise, Delaware North is working to develop quantifiable, responsible gaming risk profiles that frontline customer service employees can use to identify potential problem gaming behavior. This initiative is still in pre-launch status and will be leveraged to uphold Delaware North’s commitment to responsible gaming.