Mask Mandate Approved in Clark County, Nevada
The Clark County Commission has included casinos in its recent mask mandate.
This week, mask wearing among employees of casinos in Las Vegas was up for debate. Nevada has seen an uptick in the number of COVID-19 cases and with venues operating at 100% capacity, officials feel that employees should be masking up. The Clark County Commission ruled this week that all employees must wear a face mask when working in a public area.
Gaming Control Board Shares the News
The Gaming Control Board reported the news earlier this week, stating that all employees need to be wearing a mask in a casino. Control Board Chairman Brin Gibson said that the Board will be taking action against license holders that do not follow through with the mandate.
The order went into effect on Thursday at midnight and includes all gambling properties in Clark County. The downtown area of Las Vegas and the Strip are included in this county. According to Gibson, emergency issues that concern the pandemic are under the control and guidance of the county governments and the best interest of the people in Nevada.
Just last week, the Southern Nevada Health District announced that vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals should be wearing a mask when in a public area indoors. At the time of the announcement, a few casino operators in Vegas took precautions and asked employees to wear a mask while at work no matter if they had been vaccinated or not.
It is expected that casinos will respect the mandate and make sure that there are no violations. Since March of last year, casino operators across the country has spearheaded vaccination efforts as well as take the necessary precautions to ensure that guests and employees are safe. Venues do not want to shut down again and lose out on revenues, so all the proper precautions will be taken to ensure that does not happen again.
While most operators have stayed within the local guidance regarding COVID-19, there are a handful that have not and paid the price for it. Back in late March, the Mohegan Sun Casino at Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas decided to host a big party with its opening ceremonies. During the event, people were photographed without masks.
The party took place when the mask mandate was in place. Several celebrities were photographed without masks and the board got wind of it. the casino was fined $60,000 for the incident. Apologies were given by some in attendance as well as the Mohegan.
The Sahara Las Vegas and Grand Sierra Resort were fined last year for violating COVID-19 guidelines. The owner of these two properties were forced to pay $75,000 for the issues.
Currently, the casinos will require employees to wear masks and visitors will be encouraged to do so. Many casinos are offering masks at several checkpoints so guests can use them. If the positive number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise, we may see the local commission decide to change the mandate to include travelers as well.
Officials are not shy about changing up the rules and the casinos want to stay open. Cleaning protocols are expected to stay the same so that the spread of the virus will hopefully be minimal. However, with tourism ramping up in Las Vegas due to the summer months and people feeling more comfortable traveling, we may see a huge surge in COVID-19 cases.
Vaccinated people as well as unvaccinated people can spread the virus. Players could easily spread it to one another when in close proximity at the gaming tables or slot machines. Hopefully this will not be the case, but it appears as though we may be in for a repeat of 2020 when it comes to a huge outbreak of cases.