Culinary Union To Sue Major Casino Companies

Lawsuit Alleges Inadequate Protections Taken Against COVID-19

Mitch Kelly
June 29, 2020 - 5:52 am
A member enters the building of Culinary Workers Union, Local 226, February 13, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Alex Wong/Getty Images

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LAS VEGAS, NV (KXNT) - On Monday, The Culinary Union plans to publicly announce that they're filing a lawsuit on behalf of members who work in casinos on the Las Vegas Strip in order to protect workers and their families from the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. 

The lawsuit alleges casino hotels have not protected workers, their families, and their community from the spread of COVID-19, and that the current rules and procedures in place for responding to workers contracting COVID-19 have been wholly and dangerously inadequate. 

The lawsuit focuses on the companies’ failure to properly warn workers, disinfect, and quarantine when a worker or their co-worker tests positive for COVID-19. 

The Culinary Union is demanding safety for all hospitality and gaming workers in Nevada and is tracking what casino employers are doing to prevent COVID-19 in the following areas on CulinaryClean.org: 

 - Requiring daily cleaning of guest rooms

 - Mandatory testing of all employees for COVID-19 before returning to work and regular testing thereafter 

 - Providing adequate COVID-19 PPE for employees

 - Enforcing social distancing and other COVID-19 prevention measures

 - Requiring guests to wear face masks in all public areas - The Culinary Union has been calling for all customers to wear masks in public spaces since early May. A mandatory mask policy is a good step towards protecting workers and the hospitality industry in Nevada, but much more has to be done.

 - Posting a COVID-19 safety plan on public-facing website - After months of advocating for increased transparency, the Culinary Union is pleased that most major gaming companies have posted their COVID-19 safety plans on their public-facing websites.

News of the lawsuit comes was followed over the weekend bu fficials with Caesars Entertainment saying a casino employee has died after testing positive for the coronavirus.

According to a statement released over the weekend, officials extended sympathies to the employee's family and friends. They have not been able to determine how the employee, who worked as utility porter, contracted the virus.