- Unvaccinated workers will take weekly tests from January 10th, at their own expense.
- MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle encourages employees to get vaccinated, take a booster shot, and wear masks indoors, claims “Now is the time to take action”.
- Weekly $75 antigen/PCR tests will cost employees around $3,900 in 2022 alone.
Everything has a limit, even MGM Resort’s patience with their Las Vegas staff refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine. In order to fix that problem, the company decided that from January 10th all non-vaccinated hourly staff members have to take COVID-19 tests every week – and they have to pay for it from their own pocket.
In a letter to his Las Vegas employees, MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle explained that hourly workers have to present a negative COVID-19 test every week, taken on-site or elsewhere, and present it physically or upload it to their MGM employee account. This will cost them $75 every seven days, and workers are not allowed to take the test while on the clock.
“Protect yourself and those who you love. Please get vaccinated. If you are already fully vaccinated, get a booster shot”, says Hornbuckle in the letter, encouraging customers and workers to wear masks while staying inside MGM resorts, as a display of the company’s commitment to safety and health.
MGM will not accept rapid tests, only laboratory-based antigen tests and/or PCR tests. In the last two weeks, Nevada had 751 new cases of COVID-19 per day, which is significantly higher than in the month of June, when 150 new cases were confirmed daily. The situation escalated in Southern Nevada, most probably because of the new COVID-19 omicron variant. Still, the situation is far better than this time last year, when Nevada counted around 2,100 new cases every day.
On the other hand, many hourly workers at MGM resorts earn less than $20 per hour, so a weekly $75 test will cost them around $39,000 if they decide to stay at MGM for a whole year. At first, in August 2021 the company debuted a testing policy that required non-vaccinated staff to take onsite tests for $15, but in the last month, MGM announced that the price of onsite tests will increase to $38. Now, it is already a hefty $75 per test, every seven days.