Wynn Las Vegas Poker Dealers Must Soon Get Vaccinated or Submit to COVID-19 Tests

Poker dealers at the Wynn in Las Vegas must get vaccinated by April 25 or they’ll be required to submit to weekly coronavirus testing, which won’t be free of charge. The Strip mega-resort likely won’t be the last casino in town to go down this path.

wynn poker las vegas

Wynn boasts one of the most aesthetically pleasing poker rooms in the world. (Image: Upswing Poker)

The company sent out a memo to all employees earlier this week informing them of the situation. Any employee who doesn’t provide proof of vaccination by April 25 will no longer be permitted to work without taking a weekly COVID-19 test, and testing negative for the virus. That weekly test will cost each employee $15, or $60 per month. So, the casino is making it clear that there will be a fee going forward for those who refuse vaccination.

Wynn’s president lays down the law

Marilyn Spiegel, president of Wynn Las Vegas and Encore, sent out the memo, which reached employees in all departments, including poker dealers and poker room staff. In the memo, Spiegel writes that “we can all sense that Las Vegas is, finally, springing back to life.”

She’s correct, as tourism has been up over the past month and many casino floors, pools, and poker rooms have been packed. On May 1, Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak will permit local governments to determine their own COVID-19 guidelines going forward. Many have speculated that Clark County, home to Las Vegas, will relax many of its current pandemic restrictions on or shortly after May 1. But to get to that point, as Spiegel writes, the Nevada Gaming Commission and the Control Board must sign off, and that likely won’t happen if the casinos aren’t taking certain precautions.

One of those precautions is to ensure employees are vaccinated so that the gaming board finds it safe to eliminate certain restrictions, such as capacity limits (currently at 50% in casinos). According to Spiegel, the gaming board has urged all casinos to ensure their employees get vaccinated. If the resorts are unsuccessful in convincing employees to get vaccinated, returning to normal will likely take longer than most hope.

At present, poker rooms are only permitted to operate at 50% of the maximum allowable occupancy. Games are limited to a maximum of eight players, plexiglass dividers separate players at most card tables, and face masks are a requirement while playing poker.

Many players want those restrictions removed so that the game can return to its pre-coronavirus ways. But, as Spiegel made clear in her memo, we can all forget about that happening anytime soon unless more locals and tourists get vaccinated.

Written by
Jon Sofen
Semi-pro poker player with 17 years experience on the felt and more than five years working as professional poker media.

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