Casino operator Crown is considering a ‘no jab, no entry’ policy for customers while pushing for its 20,000 employees across Australia to be fully vaccinated.
The gaming group is consulting with its employees and other stakeholders about its vaccination policy against Covid-19, which will affect visitors and employees.
It cited a survey of Crown employees in Melbourne, Sydney and Perth last week that found 63 percent supported the idea of a mandatory vaccination policy in the hospitality sector.
Casino operators Crown consider a ‘no jab, no entry’ policy for gamblers (photo, Crown Casino in Melbourne)
Crown Resorts and Crown Melbourne boss Steve McCann said that while it had been urging workers to get vaccinated for some time, it was time to be more “proactive”.
“As such a major hospitality employer in Australia with resorts hosting more than 30 million visits a year pre-Covid, we must take steps to protect people,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.
“That starts with our employees, but also extends to our guests and the wider community.
“This is about protecting every Australian.”
The staff survey also found that 60 percent of respondents had already been fully vaccinated or had had at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine.
Crown plans to make it easier for more employees to get vaccinated by offering three hours of paid leave for each vaccination received.
Crown Resorts and Crown Melbourne boss Steve McCann also urged staff to get vaccinated (pictured, a dose of a Covid-19 vaccine)
Employees are also entitled to an extra day of paid sick leave if necessary.
Those who have already been vaccinated, or are currently discontinued due to closures, will receive a $50 gift card.
“Covid-19 has devastated the hospitality industry, and it has been felt acutely by our people,” said Mr McCann.
“Supporting the vaccination targets set by governments will help our industry reopen, stay open and recover faster.”
However, United Workers Union casino director Dario Mujkic said mandatory vaccination would cause additional stress for workers, even as he supported anyone who received a Covid shot.
“The vaccine rollout has been messed up from the start, not only because of the lack of availability and access, but because of confusing and mixed messages from all layers of government,” he said.
A staff survey found that 60 percent had already received at least one dose and 63 percent supported mandatory vaccination for hospitality workers (pictured, Crown Casino in Melbourne)
“The announcement that Crown is mandating vaccines will cause needless anxiety among casino employees, who, like the general public, have faced confusing messaging and disinformation campaigns.
“Vaccine mandates should be run by elected governments based on expert health advice and should not be reserved for corporations, whether that be Crown or anyone else.”
Crown is just one of a number of Australian companies – such as Qantas, Virgin Australia, Telstra and SPC – that are following the mandatory vaccination route.
But the problem is fraught for companies, warned Innes Willox, chief executive of the Australian Industry Group, as they are doing it on their own without any federal government or regulatory backup.
“All of this is left to individual entrepreneurs and operators,” he told Nine Network on Tuesday.
‘But ultimately companies are responsible for health and safety.
Employees who have been vaccinated are entitled to an additional day of sick leave if required and a $50 dollar gift card (pictured, a dose of the Pfizer vaccine)
“They are also responsible for who comes into their company or works in their company.
“So companies will have to make and make their own decisions about things like rapid testing, about vaccine passports, about mandatory vaccines or not.”
Mr. Willox noted that there had been some trepidation in the face of customer resistance to the use of QR codes in stores and other points of sale.
“They don’t want to get into confrontation,” he said.
Mr. Willox also warned that the issue “would become one of the toughest industrial and business problems we’ve faced.”
“It’s going to end up in the courts at different times, in different tribunals, Fair Work and the like, and eventually we’re going to have to get some clearer leads,” he said.