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MGM Resorts casino employees are to get a vaccine or pay $15 weekly fee

Senior Reporter

While some businesses are firing employees who refuse the unpolished vaccine, MGM Resorts in Vegas gives casino staff “options” to choose from. Everyone working in the facility is to show proof of the vaccine or pay $15 every single week for COVID-19 tests until they do so. This softer version of an ultimatum will cost workers hundreds of dollars down the road. 

MGM Resorts casino employees are to get a vaccine or pay $15 weekly fee
Image: pixabay.com

Just months ago, rumors of the COVID-19 vaccine eventually being forced were considered an “idiotic conspiracy.” Now stories of employees in the US being fired for refusing it are surfacing almost daily. This unethical approach is slowly slithering its way into every accessible corner of the world, and many companies are voluntarily marching along - MGM Resorts, Las Vegas, being one of them. 

As of July 26, Covid-19 testing will transition to an ongoing cadence, and any Las Vegas employee who is not designated in Workday as “Home Office” for their location and does not have a vaccine verification sticker will be required to participate,” Announced Brian Ahern, MGM spokesman.

From this moment on, every casino staff member will have no choice but to upload a photo of their vaccine card or give up $15 weekly for COVID-19 tests that will be conducted within the facility. No one gets exemptions. The only other option is to get tested elsewhere and show proof of negative results. This is quite the leap from last week’s efforts to reinforce masks for employees.  

Employees choosing not to get the emergency-authorized ‘Kinder Surprise’ vaccine (full of unknown the unknown) will be losing hundreds of dollars as time goes by, being that this weekly fee adds up to approximately $60 a month. That may be pocket change to some and days worth of food on the table for others. Perhaps this “fee” is simply used as a push to convince the unvaccinated to finally give it up. 

What’s more, is that MGM stated that employees who test positive or have close contact with someone who tests positive would be forced to quarantine, and only those who are vaccinated will get paid time off to recover. That is at least 14 days of missing work, which could cost some of the employees their rent money for the month (at best). The twisted factor in all of this is that many of those who contract COVID-19 have slight, or almost non-existent symptoms, which paints a concerning picture already.

Keep in mind that MGM operates a vast variety of casinos across the United States and across the world, and provides jobs for over 35,000 employees. In Vegas alone, the company runs Bellagio, Aria Resort & Casino, Vdara, Excalibur, Luxor, Mandalay Bay, Delano Las Vegas, MGM Grand Las Vegas, MGM Grand Garden Arena, Skylofts at MGM Grand, The Mansion at MGM Grand, The Signature at MGM Grand, The Mirage, New York-New York, Park MGM. This new, gut-wrenching development is only in its beginning stages and will be (indirectly) forced in a large number of Vegas casinos.

As for the actual process of this 2021 segregation plan, MGM informs that last names will be divided into four testing groups:

  • Group 1: A-E
  • Group 2: F-L
  • Group 3: M-R
  • Group 4: S-Z

Each group will have a scheduled time for the testing and will continue on until Nevada’s vaccination rates reach the Health Department’s desired goal - which is clearly 10/10. At this point in time, ​​only 53% of individuals have received at least one dose, and only 44% percent are fully vaccinated. Needless to say, there’s still a long way to go. 

Nevada Governor, Steve Sisolak, expressed his full support of getting the numbers up,

“If you are not vaccinated, or if you know someone who is not vaccinated, now is the time to get your shot and ensure that Nevada continues on our path to recovery.” 

It’s one thing to reinstate the mask policy for employees regardless of the vaccination status, but to use this new tactic corner “the rest” to get a jab seems somewhat unprincipled. MGM isn’t the only company doing this; the entire state of Nevada is cooking up plans to require state employees to either show proof of a COVID-19 vaccine or undergo weekly tests for the virus beginning next month. That’s not to mention that Nevada isn’t the only state pushing this. This madness is not going away anytime soon. 

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