- The CDC is now recommending that those who are fully vaccinated are allowed to be indoors without masks.
- Consequently, Las Vegas casinos are removing their mask mandates.
- They are not tracking vaccination status, instead relying on the honor system.
LAS VEGAS - The CDC released a statement to the effect that fully vaccinated people do not have to wear masks indoors anymore.
“The science is clear: If you are fully vaccinated, you are protected, and you can start doing the things that you stopped doing because of the pandemic,” the CDC said in a statement on Thursday. https://t.co/jSDPwdK8t7 pic.twitter.com/MQZbEV4Yxe
— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 13, 2021
This guidance has led to many casinos across the country re-analyzing their mask mandates and restrictions.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board gave casinos the go-ahead to decide their own mask policies in light of the CDC guidance.
There is one potential hitch in these reopening plans - casinos have no way of knowing which guests are actually vaccinated.
They plan on relying on the honor system, which could be quite ineffective - casinos aren’t known to rely on the honor system for catching cheaters, for instance.
Tim Brooks, owner of Emerald Island, was quoted on the matter by Fox 5.
"With herd immunity and everybody getting the vaccine, I don't think they would have brought it this far if they didn't feel comfortable. There are always going to be some people that will try to skirt the system,” said Brooks.
Still, the Nevada Gaming Control Board did not see fit to mandate that casinos track the vaccination status of guests.
"The Board’s agents will not attempt to confirm vaccination status of patrons. Consequently, unless circumstances change, it is not practical for the Board to attempt to enforce a mask mandate tethered to an individual’s vaccination status.”
Basically, given that the new CDC guidance means that people are more or less fine to operate without a mask, and given that the Board will not be tracking vaccination status, there doesn’t seem to be a way around this problem.
The casinos and the Board are in the position of either requiring masks past what the CDC recommends, or relying on the honor system for their patrons.
The irony of a Las Vegas casino purporting to rely on the honor system should not be lost on anyone.