Nearly 1,000 Resorts World Casino employees told furlough to last longer, layoffs may come

Racino employees busted in casino card heist
File photo by Ken Maldonado

Over 2,200 Resorts World employees received notice Monday that the casino company has reassessed the layoffs and furloughs they issued at the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak in New York in April. While the furloughs were expected to be temporary, the company said that without a firm reopening date, employees may be furloughed until October or laid off.

The letter went out to 1,256 employees at Resorts World Catskills and 955 employees at Resorts World Casino New York City, in South Ozone Park, according to the company.

The casino company cited an “unforeseen delay in reopening, prolonged negative business circumstances and major economic downturn stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic and consequent travel and tourism disruptions” as the reason for the notice, according to the letter Resorts World sent to its employees.

“Unfortunately, several weeks after ceasing operations in March, we were forced to make the difficult decision to furlough some of our employees,” said a Resorts World spokesperson. “As part of that process, we are now required by law to issue WARN letters to the furloughed staff. We continue to work with our state partners, whose leadership has been instrumental in bending and flattening the COVID-19 curve, to institute additional safety protocols, including installing advanced filtration systems, noninvasive temperature checks, proper distancing on the gaming floor, and the requirement that masks be worn at all times.”

“As New York continues its phased reopening, which includes retail stores and now malls as well, we are optimistic that we will also be able to reopen our doors soon,” the spokesperson added.

The letter was sent out in compliance with the WARN Act, a federal labor law created in 1988. The law requires certain employers to warn employees about mass layoffs at least 60 days in advance.

While COVID-19 cases have spread rapidly across the U.S., cases in New York have remained low over the past several weeks. Saturday, July 11, marked the first day in months when not a single COVID-19 related death occurred within the state.