Native American Casinos: 10 Intriguing Facts to Know

Explore Native American casinos in the US, learn about their unique tax regulations, gaming ordinances, and how profits combat inequality.
Native American casinos

Native American casinos have grown to become an essential part of the United States gambling scene. With over 500 Indigenous-owned casinos across the nation, they contribute significantly to the industry’s revenue and employment opportunities. In this article, we will explore some fascinating facts about these unique establishments and the impact they have on local communities.

Size and Revenue

Some of the world’s largest casinos are Native American-owned. The WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Oklahoma, boasts 600,000 sq. ft. of gaming space, while the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Ledyard, Connecticut, offers 344,000 sq. ft. In fact, Native American casinos generate more gambling revenue than all the casinos on the Las Vegas Strip combined.

Ownership and Management

Although located on sovereign Indigenous land, not all casinos are run by Native Americans. Many tribes collaborate with investors, advisors, and managers to ensure their casinos’ success.

Employment Opportunities

Native American casinos significantly impact local employment rates, resulting in a 26% increase in jobs and a 14% decrease in the number of working poor. These establishments also contribute to an 11.5% rise in reservation populations, allowing Native Americans to return to their ancestral lands.

Social and Economic Impact

Despite the positive effects, building casinos on Indigenous land can have some negative consequences. These include a 10% increase in violent crime, a 10% increase in car theft, and a higher bankruptcy rate for those living within 50 miles of the casino. Additionally, Native Americans are at an increased risk of developing gambling addictions compared to the general population.

Investments and Charitable Contributions

Profits generated by Native American casinos are often used to improve infrastructure, education, and healthcare for Indigenous communities. Many tribes also donate a significant portion of their earnings to charity.


In summary, Native American casinos play a vital role in the gambling industry by providing employment opportunities and contributing to the economy. However, they can also lead to negative social effects, and Native Americans continue to struggle with poverty. The profits from these casinos are invested in improving the lives of Indigenous people and giving back to the community.