The trade body of the gambling industry in the UK – the Betting and Gaming Council – welcomed the authorities’ plans to allow Scottish casinos and bingo halls to resume operations soon.
The Scottish Government has provided an indicative date of August 24th for the reopening of the casino and bingo venues.
The announcement came at a time when the casinos in England are preparing to resume operations on August 1st, after a variety of measures to ensure the safety of both staff members and customers of the venues have been unveiled. Some of the health protection measures set to be taken in England-based casinos include hand sanitisation equipment, tracing and tracking mechanisms, Perspex screens and social distancing measures.
For the time being, around 800 people are employed in Scotland’s 11 casinos, which have also been subject to strict measures to prevent the coronavirus infection from spreading further. The announcement of the upcoming opening was announced by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in a statement to the Scottish Parliament.
Apart from that, Scottish betting shops will also be permitted to switch on their electronic gaming machines on August 24th, after the Betting and Gaming Council shared some concerns that the operators’ business is at stake. Now, the trade body representing the gambling sector in the UK welcomed the Scottish Government’s decision to greenlight the reopening of casinos and bingo halls in the country and finally provide an indicative date for that.
Casino and Bingo Venues in England Will Reopen on August 1st
As Casino Guardian recently reported, Ministers in Scotland and Wales have faced criticism lately, as they seemed unwilling to allow casino venues to reopen.
In comparison, England announced earlier this month that gambling venues would be able to resume operations on August 1st after spending more than four months shut as part of the coronavirus lockdown. Until now, Ministers in Scotland and Wales have remained silent about the fate of casinos in their countries, with no information regarding an upcoming reopening date.
The Scottish and Welsh Governments have been criticised because of the uncertainty faced by 2,000 casino staff in their countries, who have been forced to stop working for more than four months while the Covid-19 lockdown was on. Apart from that, the Ministers’ critics emphasised on the fact that the lengthy lockdown has forced the Treasury to spend about £5 million every week to pay furlough expenses for casino workers as long as the gambling venues were inoperable.
According to critics, gambling businesses across the UK needed more clarity regarding their reopening dates and the conditions under which they would be allowed to resume operations. England’s casinos and bingo halls will be able to reopen doors tomorrow, on August 1st, and now there has been some clarity about the reopening date of these venues in Scotland. The Welsh Government has still not revealed any details about the possible reopening of local casinos.