Two of the biggest casino operators in the US will require customers to wear masks.
The decision for both operators to adopt this policy was made after Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak announced that residents and visitors would be required to wear masks in public after recording a spike in coronavirus cases in the state.
Facemasks required at MGM and Caesars venues
Prior to this announcement, both operators varied the rules for face masks depending on the regulations set by the state.
In Nevada, face masks were mandatory for customers at gaming tables and in Illinois, they were mandatory for anyone indoors who could not socially distance. However, facemasks were not required for customers in several other states.
Both operators required staff to wear a facemask, but now all customers at MGM and Caesars casinos will be required to wear a facemask as well. The casinos will provide facemasks for customers who need one.
Caesars’ new mask policy has already come into effect and MGM’s will come into effect from tomorrow (26 June).
What the operators said
Tony Rodio, chief executive of Caesars Entertainment said that Caesars made the decision after looking at the latest scientific evidence in favour of wearing face coverings.
Rodio said: “We promised that Caesars would continue to evaluate the latest recommendations, directives and medical science regarding the COVID-19 public health emergency and modify our enhanced health and safety protocols accordingly.
“As a result, we are immediately requiring everyone in our properties to wear masks, because the scientific evidence strongly suggests that wearing masks and practicing social distancing may be the most important deterrents to spreading COVID-19 from person to person.”
MGM said that this policy should help its customers feel safer in the venues.
In a statement, MGM said: “As part of our work to continually update and evolve our health and safety policies, we are now requiring masks for all guests and visitors inside public spaces. We hope that our guests will do their part to help the collective efforts to curtail the spread of the virus. Guests who do not wish to comply will be asked to leave the property.
“It is clear that the Coronavirus still presents a significant public health threat, and masks have proven to be one of the best ways to curtail the spread. We want guests and employees to feel comfortable that we are putting their health and safety first.”
MGM and Caesars reopen casinos across the US
Caesars said it will continue to reopen its closed properties in Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and in Ontario. The operator will reopen the venues “in line with regulatory approvals and customer demand.”
Caesars has already reopened its casino venues in Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Nevada. The operator has also reopened tribal casinos in Arizona, California and North Carolina.
MGM reopened its casinos will in line with the seven-point safety plan it revealed in May which is intended to help ensure the safety of MGM’s customers and employees.