LAS VEGAS (AP) – Thousands of hotel, casino and restaurant workers marched on the Las Vegas Strip on Friday to highlight their call for employers to rehire more people who were laid off last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Despite the reopening of casinos and hotels, Culinary Union officials said about a third of its members – or about 21,000 workers – were left out of work about 19 months after the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Nevada.
Many unemployed employees have now exhausted public unemployment benefits, they said.
Great to see everyone again! Thousands of people marched on the Strip earlier today. Las Vegas workers have built the hospitality industry over the Culinary Union’s 87 years and they should be centered as the economy recovers from the devastating effects of COVID-19. pic.twitter.com/Q0W3ZFueJG
– The Culinary Union (@ Culinary226) September 25, 2021
“Las Vegas workers have built the hospitality industry over the Culinary Union’s 87 years and they should be centered as the economy recovers from the devastating effects of COVID-19,” the union said in a statement before the evening scheduled to coincide with shift changes on a busy weekend of sports and entertainment on the Strip.
“This march is not a protest against a casino company,” union spokeswoman Bethany Khan said on Friday. “It is a march, not a strike, a rally, an action or a demonstration.”
Workers chanted “full-service restaurants” and “full-service cleaning” as they began walking Friday night from Flamingo Road on Las Vegas Boulevard, where police closed sections of the Strip.
The union’s statement said the aim was to emphasize that hotel workers “are ready to prepare and serve good food in full-service restaurants, prepare and serve drinks and beverages from quality and to ensure that the rooms are cleaned and disinfected daily “.
Casinos across the state have seen a surge in tourism to set monthly earnings records, and tourism officials have reported that the number of visitors in July was approaching the millions counted in July 2019 before the pandemic.
A UFC event was scheduled for Saturday at T-Mobile Arena, the NFL Las Vegas Raiders were scheduled to host the Miami Dolphins on Sunday at Allegiant Stadium, and NASCAR events were scheduled with no capacity restrictions at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The resorts hosted shows ranging from productions by Cirque du Soleil MystÃ¨re, O, Michael Jackson One and Beatles Love to illusionists Penn & Teller and percussionists Blue Man Group.
At least 20 clubs of varying sizes have reopened following coronavirus closures, and the large Resorts World Las Vegas resort opened its new Zouk nightclub this month.
Gov. Steve Sisolak said he plans to meet with union leaders at the International Union of Elevator Builders’ international convention in Las Vegas on Monday, when he is expected to speak on the State’s plan. ‘try to use the recent legislation on banking infrastructure to create well-paying jobs. .
âNevada’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic is focused on creating jobs and supporting workers,â Sisolak said in a statement Friday.