Gov. J.B. Pritzker Orders Illinois Casinos to Shut Down on Friday

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As Illinois hit 12,000 new covid-19 cases on Tuesday, November 17, Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that indoor entertainment venues, including casinos, will shut down starting Friday, November 20.

Gov. Pritzker Rolls in New Covid-19 Restrictions, Shutters Casinos

Speaking on Tuesday, November 17, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker ordered casinos, museums, retail shops and indoor entertainment venues to prepare and shutter their operations starting on Friday, November 20 until further notice. Gov. Pritzker said that Tier 3 restrictions boil down to a simple maxim: “if you don’t need to do it, don’t,” as the state reported 12,000 positive new cases on Tuesday.

Illinois will still allow outdoor recreational activities to carry on but at reduced 25% capacity. Businesses that remain open will face a number of restrictions and occupancy limitations.

The measure comes at a crucial time as Illinois’ healthcare system is running on fumes, beds and doctors both being in shortage. What’s worse, Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike believes that the number of infections will continue to grow.

Gov. Pritzker confirmed Ezike’s forecast, arguing that the number of hospitalizations and deaths will keep climbing throughout the state. However, the governor remains adamant that state authorities can counterweigh the resurgence of the virus and stop it in its tracks.

Casinos Unlikely to Infect People, Will Shut Down

Even though casinos are some of the safest places to be, according to official data, and support by Gov. Pritzker who has defended the decision to allow them to operate at 25% capacity in the past, gambling establishments will have to shutter operations moving forward.

Official data indicates that in the 30-day period leading up to Friday, November 13, 23 people who had visited a casino reported positive for covid-19 within 14 days of the visit. In other words, casinos are the 41st most likely place where you can get infected with covid-19 according to official data.

Illinois recently granted the Collinsville horseracing track – Fairmount Park – a Masters Sports Wagering License allowing it to offer sports betting products in the state. FanDuel has followed up this by investing millions for the revitalization and refurbishment of the venue.

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