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US – Culinary Union files lawsuit against Las Vegas Strip over COVID-19 failures

By - 30 June 2020

The Culinary Union has filed a lawsuit on June 29 on behalf of Culinary Union 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 Culinary Union is suing companies for injunctive relief under the Labor-Management Relations Act based on the hazardous working conditions that workers face. 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 is being filed against some big names including MGM Grand, Harrahs at the LINQ and Caesars Palace. Culinary Union’s 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.

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