The American Gaming Association (AGA) has urged federal government to offer additional support to the gambling industry as the market continues to feel the effect of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
Casinos and other gambling venues across the US have been forced to close as states governments implement new measures to combat the spread of Covid-19.
Last night (March 17), Nevada was the latest state to introduce such measures, with all casinos required to close for at least 30 days.
AGA chief executive Bill Miller said it is now up to federal government to offer support to those impacted by the widespread shutdown, estimating that some 60% of casino employees have so far been affected.
“In a matter of days, the US casino industry went from a growing, thriving segment of the US economy to a near standstill,” Miller said. “We are witnessing a rapidly increasing number of our nation’s commercial and tribal casinos that have been shuttered, impacting 60% of all casino employees. This will have a dire effect on the communities in which we operate across 43 states.
“As state governments close casinos as a part of the urgent public health response to Covid-19, elected leaders should move just as urgently to support the workers and businesses who will bear the brunt of those effects.
“Our immediate priorities are actions that provide liquidity to allow us to support employees.”
Miller said the AGA is committed to working with governments both during the outbreak and after when casinos reopen in order to support workers across the sector.
“Gaming is a resilient industry; as leading hospitality companies, we’re employers, supporters of small businesses, and economic engines,” Miller said.
“Once we’re through this crisis, we are committed to working with government leaders to play a critical role in reinvigorating communities across the country.”