By Tony Winterburn • 23 April 2020 • 9:30
Mayor Carolyn Goodman has said she would like the city to reopen immediately, offering up Sin City as a test for doctors and government leaders to study what would happen if a big city reopened.
The move, if it goes ahead, would allow 900,000 unemployed people in Las Vegas, mostly in the hospitality industry, to get back to work.
Goodman dismissed the concerns, saying that everyone was being “an alarmist.” But people were alarmed by Goodman’s proposition to reopen, even with social distancing requirements in place.
Thousands of outraged Americans took to social media to vent their anger:
“But you’re encouraging hundreds of thousands of people coming there in casinos, smoking, drinking, touching slot machines, breathing circulated air, doesn’t that sound like a virus petri dish? How is that safe?” said one New Yorker.
“I do not think it’s a good idea,” Rachel, a health care worker, tweeted. She said it would be almost impossible to control virus transmission in that kind of environment.
And Marine Corps veteran Pete Romero agreed, even though he has family members who have lost their jobs at a Las Vegas casino. “We still need to wait this out,” he said.
Romero’s 80-year-old father also lives in Las Vegas, and he doesn’t want him setting foot near a casino. “He’s made it this far,” Romero said. “We don’t want to lose him.”
So far, Las Vegas has lost 150 people to the novel coronavirus, but Goodman said she wants to be able to tell the 900,000 laid-off workers when they’ll have their next paycheck.
“All I’m doing is asking for a plan,” she said.
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