A Las Vegas casino worker has passed away after testing positive for COVID-19. According to the local CBS affiliate, an employee of a Caesars Entertainment casino passed away Saturday after having tested positive for the virus.
It is still unknown which property the employee worked at or what that person’s job entailed in the casino.
“Sadly, we can confirm that one of our colleagues has passed away after testing positive for COVID-19. We are heartbroken by this development and are expressing our deepest sympathies to their family and friends,” said the company in a statement. “While we have no been able to determine how the employee contracted the virus, once the employee informed us about testing positive, the company implemented its protocols to determine who had been in close proximity with this individual at the direction of the Southern Nevada Health District.”
The statement went on to say that those employees who were found to be in close quarters with this person were placed on paid leave and began to self-isolate. The company said that they will not allow those employees to return to work until they test negative for the virus.
The development happens just as the Culinary Union began to threaten a lawsuit against several Las Vegas casinos over unsafe working conditions for its workers.
Just a few days after the death, Culinary Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165 filed a lawsuit against “major Strip venues,” according to a Las Vegas Review-Journal report.
The lawsuit is centered around the conditions at The Signature at the MGM Grand, Sadelle’s Café at Bellagio and Guy Fieri’s Las Vegas Kitchen and Bar at The LINQ. The lawsuit alleges that companies did not properly warn workers, disinfect the work area or force a quarantine for employees after it discovered that there was a staff member in the kitchen who had contracted the virus.
“Nothing is more important to us than the safety of everyone inside of our properties,” MGM Resorts said in a statement regarding the pending litigation. “We have worked to train our managers in our incident response protocols and we work very closely with the health department officials in their efforts to contact trace. The nation is in the midst of a public health crisis and we are relying on all of our employees to follow CDC guidelines both at work and at home.”
A casino employee died at a tribal casino in Arizona nearly two weeks ago. In response, the tribe opted to shut down operations at all three of its casinos for two weeks while it sanitized the entire property.