Sin City Set To Reopen Businesses On June 4

 

On April 22, CNN’s Anderson Cooper interviewed Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman about the city’s closing down in early March. In April, Mayor Goodman already began advocating for reopening. By the time of the CNN interview, where Mayor Goodman infamously offered up local residents as COVID-19 test cases for a cure, over 45,000 Americans had died. Now, as that number hits 100,000, local plans are being prepped as Las Vegas reopens business as early as June 4.

The exchange between Mayor Goodman and Anderson Cooper is striking for the gonzo nature of Mayor Goodman’s responses.

Watch the interview here. The incredulous moment where Mayor Goodman offers up the citizenry of Las Vegas as COVID-19, “control group,” guinea pigs start at time mark 22:22.

But that was then, and this is now.

This isn’t just about Las Vegas, or specifically Nevada, either. All 50 states are partially reopened now.

Major businesses are reopening soon.

Disney plans on reopening several of its theme parks, including Disneyland which employs over 70,000 people, beginning July 11.

The MGM will reopen several resorts on June 4 in accordance with Nevada’s reopening plans.

Ready or not, the United States is reopening in the middle of a pandemic.

Is it too soon?

Over 71% of Americans believe that the country is lifting social distancing guidelines too rapidly for the sake of national reopening.

Under what safety and health guidelines will Las Vegas reopen business?

How will the general public and employees be protected against COVID-19 in Las Vegas?

The pandemic has not abated. There is no vaccine.

Is the need to replenish government coffers, and increase profit margins for businesses, being prioritized over public safety?

Are everyday people being treated as guinea pigs for the benefit of the economy?

Is Las Vegas ready to reopen?

Las Vegas Reopens Business

Las Vegas currently has over 8,000 positive COVID-19 cases and about 400 deaths.

However, after 10 weeks of lockdowns and business closings, Nevada governor Steve Sisolak said that the state is reopening.

On Tuesday, May 26, Governor Sisolak officially announced that Las Vegas casinos would reopen by June 4. Governor Sisolak even encouraged tourists to visit.

Governor Sisolak made this statement at a May 26 press conference:

“We welcome the visitors from across the country to come here, to have a good time, no different than they did previously, but we’re gonna be cautious.”

Additionally, churches will be allowed to open as long as services maintain a 50-person capacity.

As Las Vegas reopens business, and other businesses statewide follow suit, social distancing guidelines must be followed.

Here are the COVID-19 guidelines that the Nevada Gaming Control Board implemented on May 1st that newly reopening businesses must follow.

Limited Patron Capacity

Casinos and businesses will only be allowed to open if they operate at 50% patron admittance capacity.

As Las Vegas reopens business, casinos can only admit half as many patrons as they would have admitted in 2019.

Instructive COVID-19 Signage

All casinos must post ample amounts of visible signs that instructs patrons and employees of proper COVID-19 hygienic protocols.

Signs will remind patrons and employees to wear masks, maintain social distancing, wash hands, avoid touching faces, and to cover coughs and sneezes.

Enhanced Employee COVID-19 Prevention Practices and Training

Casino employees will be instructed to not come to work if they suspect they have been infected with COVID-19.

Employees will also be trained to recognize COVID-19 symptoms in patrons and coworkers.

Casino employees will be required to wash their hands and/or use sanitizer frequently during work shifts.

Employers will be required to supply ample amounts of sanitizer, masks, and assorted PPE materials to ensure safe operations.

Every employee will be tested for COVID-19 before beginning a shift.

Best Workplace Sanitizing Practices

Employees and patrons must be given a mask upon request.

Dice, playing cards, and all commonly touched surfaces will be cleaned and sanitized frequently. Expect your table dealer to offer you free sprays of sanitizer.

Casinos will be required to have medical staff on-site at all times.

Plexiglass guard barriers will separate patrons as they play at tables. Most tables will only allow 3 or 4 patrons at a time.

 

Patrons will only be allowed to play every other slot machine to allow for proper social distancing.

Furniture in communal spaces will be spaced out to keep people social distanced as well.

Are all these precautions enough to ensure safety as Las Vegas reopens business?

Lingering Doubts About Safety

Gambling is a big money-making industry in Nevada.

Nevada made over $8.76 billion in tax revenue in 2019 from legal casino gambling.

These new guidelines for COVID-19 best practices are not guaranteed to stem the spread of the virus.

Even with the newly implemented social distancing guidelines, would you feel safe going to Las Vegas?

Governor Sisolak is currently self-quarantining after learning that a business he visited previously had an employee test positive for COVID-19.

The Nevada governor made this announcement at the same May 26 press conference announcing that Las Vegas reopens business on June 4.

Further complicating the matter of public safety during reopening is the fact that some states blatantly lied about spiking infection data to justify reopening.

The state of Georgia falsified COVID-19 statistical data by making it look like new infections were plateauing or going downward.

The COVID-19 infection rate for Georgia citizens was entered into statistical models in out-of-order dates to produce desirable results.

This is not to imply the Nevada is doing the same.

Still, Las Vegas citizens, or American citizens for that matter, have no hard guarantees that they will be safe as states reopen for business.

As Mayor Goodman bizarrely remarked in her CNN interview, local Las Vegas residents may unwittingly become COVID-19 safety guinea pigs after all.

Every out-of-state visitor to Las Vegas should keep that in mind as they visit Sin City in the era of COVID-19.

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