As vaccination efforts have been going at full bore in the US, most businesses have fallen in line with a pro-vaccination stance. While few have discriminated outright against unvaccinated employees, the benefits for those choosing to vaccinate have increased.
Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort is one of the gaming businesses that seeks to encourage the type of behavior that it thinks will allow quicker economic recovery as well as safeguard the well-being of employees and guests.
As a result, the Arkansas property announced that it’s boosting the minimum wage for vaccinated employees who do not receive tips to $16 and boosting the minimum wage for those who receive tips to $8.50. While this constitutes just a 3% increase, it marks a broader trend where companies seek to bring back vaccinated employees.
MGM Resorts announced earlier this month that it would seek to only hire vaccinated employees. While some have been a little disgruntled at the fact, other casinos and gaming operators beyond the country’s borders have followed suit. British Columbia (BC), Canada, has urged the population to get their jabs. The refrain has been taken up by gaming operators in the province, urging visitors to get their COVID-19 vaccine cards if they want to attend casino floors.
Safeguarding Business Against Unvaccinated
With the recent wage hike, employees at Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort should be making $40,000 annually based on reports by local media KTHV-TV. The property recently stretched its operations with a $100-million refurbishment and expansion move which was opened in April, featuring an eight-story hotel with 200 rooms, as well as a spa and event center.
Arkansas currently ranks as one of the most conservative states insofar as vaccines go. The state has fully inoculated some 40.6% of its residents, whereas the national average is 52%. Oaklawn president Louis Cella spoke to KTHV-TV and urged employees to get vaccinated, especially now that the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) has fully cleared the Pfizer vaccine used in the US.
The resort previously hosted cash draws where vaccinated employees won as much as $45,000 per draw to celebrate the collective efforts everyone has put in protecting their fellow co-workers, guests and families.
Vaccination cards may prove a bit of a controversial issue to some but the general consensus is that vaccines have been the reason the economy has returned to some semblance of normal and the number of fatal COVID-19 cases has been declining.