While avid gamers from other parts of the world are stuck at playing online casinos like VulkanVegas casino, Caesars Entertainment is gearing up to reopen its doors to the public in Clark County, Nevada.
However, employees are required to go through COVID-19 test before they can go back to work on the 17th of July. The management made it clear that they will not be allowed to work if they tested positive or if they fail to take the test.
There are thousands of employees who will go through this. The county has been experiencing a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases recently, especially so when casinos were granted the permission to reopen last June 4th. As such, the casino management had to take measures to protect its employees and its business.
Mandatory testing is now in effect. This widespread testing is going to help the management identify those who are carrying the virus and prevent its further spread to its other employees and to the community. Furthermore, those who are not showing any sign of the virus, but have it will be identified by the tests.
According to Richard Broome, the Executive Vice President of the Caesar’s Group, mandatory testing is a good way to identify asymptomatic carriers. Asymptomatic carriers can spread the virus without realizing it. This should help protect everybody who has been in contact with an asymptomatic individual or to help find people who have the virus but did not know about it.
There are 10 casinos that Caesar’s operates in Clark County. These nine establishments include nine areas in the Las Vegas Strip, and the other one is in Harrah’s Laughlin. All these are going through the same mandatory testing for its employees.
The state has 24, 301 confirmed COVID-19 cases. The total death toll is 553, and Clark County accounts for 454 deaths. There are more than 400,000 tests performed in Nevada. The governors are now in a tight position, and they cannot claim that the state does not have enough testing capabilities.
Back in April, the state was only doing less than 1,000 tests per day. Mid-year of 2020, the state is now doing between 5,000 and 10,000 tests in a day. This is a major ramp-up, which the government and private institutions are doing to combat the pandemic.
Caesar’s is not the only institution that has mandatory COVID-19 testing. Wynn Resorts, also a big casino operator in Nevada, has a mandatory COVID-19 for its employees. The casino requires that an employee must be clear of COVID-19 before going back to work. The testing is going to start with hundreds of employees tested on a daily basis.
It is not only Clark County doing this—Las Vegas is also doing the same. Tests are conducted to provide peace of mind to employees and customers. Even household members are going through testing, according to Keith Salwoski, the Executive Director of Sands.
Keith Salwoski also said that overall, around 6,000 tests were conducted not only to the employees but also to family members. Frontline workers will go through monthly tests for COVID-19. The testing is free, and employees do not have to pay for the kit.
Meanwhile, the Culinary Union sued some resorts in the state, claiming that they were not doing enough to protect its members after asking them to come to work.
One Adolfo Fernandez, a 51-year-old worker, died of COVID-19. He was a utility porter in one of the resorts operated by Caesar’s Palace. His family blames the company for this incident.
His daughter Irma Fernandez said that she is going to fight for justice because the company did not implement safety precautions to fight the disease as they asked the employees to come back to work. Irma claims that they were not protecting their employees.
The Culinary Union is also putting pressure on lawmakers to enact legislation to combat the disease. Part of this recommendation is to require companies to increase their efforts in cleaning and sanitizing their areas of operations, along with implementing strict social distancing.
They also demand free COVID-19 testing for employees and then have a regular temperature check for all employees. They also mentioned that employees need to be better trained to handle the disease.
The Culinary Union also stated that casino companies must have an expanded health care program. Part of this demand is for the government and companies to ensure protection for pensions, having health insurance, finding public schools and then putting Americans as a top priority for employing individuals.