LAS VEGAS – Casino magnate and billionaire Sheldon Adelson is extending COVID-19 shutdown pay for Las Vegas Sands employees until at least May 17, according to a letter obtained by the Reno Gazette Journal, part of the USA TODAY Network.
"This pandemic is unlike anything I have seen in my business career," Adelson wrote in the April 23 letter. "That said, we will get through it. … Until that time arrives, this company is firmly focused on the health and safety of our Team Members and supporting each of our host communities in Macao, Singapore and Las Vegas."
While it remains unclear when the Strip will be able to re-open, Las Vegas Sands will continue to pay 9,300 employees through the shutdown.
"I’m very pleased to inform you that we are extending all benefits and pay until at least May 17," Adelson wrote. "We will continue to monitor the situation closely, and your leadership teams will keep you updated."
Read the full letter here:
Earlier this month, Nevada extended its sweeping COVID-19 shutdown an extra two weeks, keeping all casinos and other nonessential businesses dark until April 30. The economic stoppage has led to job losses throughout Nevada and the U.S.
Las Vegas Sands has emerged as one of two major casino companies in Southern Nevada that promised pay to workers through the shutdown. Wynn Resorts is also paying employees.
Adelson's company is also covering emergency pay to about 1,200 workers at 14 restaurants inside The Venetian, covering payroll costs for salaried employees and giving weekly stipends to hourly and part-time employees.
“We’re trying the best we can for our team members and our extended family,” said Las Vegas Sands President and COO Rob Goldstein in an interview with the USA TODAY Network. “These are unprecedented, difficult times. This is when we have to step up."