TUNICA, Miss. — After weeks of being a ghost town to what was once a vacation spot, hang-out spot, and seafood sensation, the casinos are reopening.
Casino managers told FOX13, they spent a lot of time on conference calls with the state and with their corporate headquarters working out the finer points of plans for the reopening.
The state’s gaming commission guidelines include the staff wearing masks.
There will be a three-person maximum at dice tables and table games, and the casino can be at no more than fifty percent occupancy.
Tunica County’s Dale Martin has family who works at the casinos.
He said he thought the casinos should never have been shut down and that the whole thing was just a hoax.
“Maybe. Who knows? They are off. I really think it’s all a scam, to be honest. We have been home for two months now,” said Martin.
Pam Wesche said she’s worked at two of the casinos in the past and she would be perfectly comfortable going to a casino when they reopen, but would definitely wear a mask.
She said she feels the casinos are doing what they should.
Wesche said, “I think they know what is required, and I think people are going to be more cautious about what they do. I don’t have a mask on now, but I normally wear one."
The Aaron Henry clinic is working with all of the casinos to provide an extra layer of health safety.
Jamie Birge, a Nurse Practitioner said, “at this point, we are trying to collaborate with the casinos in screening the staff before the casinos actually open".
The managers said slot machines will be at least six feet apart on each floor, so guests will not congregate in an area.
They will be cleaned every four hours.
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Guests will be screened as they enter the casino, offered hand sanitizer, and encouraged to wear masks provided by the casino.
Still, there is a concern in Tunica County from medical professionals about what might happen with a sudden influx of visitors.
Birge said, “one is that people who haven’t been tested that are asymptomatic they can expose others within the casinos and also expose the staff”.
One casino worker told FOX13 that he doesn’t feel safe going back to work, even with steps that have been taken.
“Well the ones I know would like to stay home where they can just get paid. That ain’t gonna happen. It’ll be over, and they’ll be ready to go back to work,” the employee said unanimously.
Regardless, the casinos are allowed to open at 8:01 a.m. on Thursday.
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