Early this week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a new recommendation that, for the next eight weeks, organizers cancel or postpone in-person events with more than 50 participants throughout the United States.
“As industry leaders who are driven by a responsibility to our clients, customers and employees, this is certainly not a directive we were hoping to see. However, it is one we intend to follow,” said the Meetings Mean Business Coalition (MMBC) in a statement responding to the decision.
“We applaud the industry professionals who are managing as best they can through this difficult and unanticipated situation – including those who are going above and beyond to promote lenience, provide solutions and contribute in significant ways to their communities.
“We understand the months – even years – of work that precede major meetings and we recognize the incredible benefits that these gatherings bring to people, businesses and the economy. Yet even as meetings are being cancelled and postponed, employees at every level are continuing to donate food, time and free public services. There is perhaps no greater testament to the industry’s value and collective strength.
“That’s why in lockstep with our partners from across the globe, the Meetings Mean Business Coalition will lead the industry’s efforts to promote fact-based decision-making and broaden awareness of the industry’s commitment to serving the public during this period of crisis and uncertainty.
We are here to help, and in addition to providing updates and coordinating with experts from the health and safety community, we will help lead the way with new resources; communications assistance for meeting professionals; a steady drumbeat of impact stories; and a plan for recovery.”
In certain areas of the United States, state and local officials have announced more stringent measures.
Hotels and casinos in Las Vegas and the rest of Nevada have shut down for at least 30 days following an order by the state’s governor that all nonessential businesses close to the public for that period.
MGM Resorts reports that its Las Vegas properties are now only taking reservations for arrivals beginning Friday, April 17. The company operates the MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, Excalibur, Luxor, Monte Carlo, Vdara, Aria, Bellagio, New York – New York, Circus Circus and Gold Strike in the city.
MGM has also shut down the MGM National Harbor in Maryland the Empire City Casino in New York.
Wynn Resorts had shut down the Wynn Las Vegas as of Tuesday, March 17, with no word yet on an expected reopening date.
In New York City, restaurants, bars and cafes have been limited to take-out and delivery service only. Nightclubs, movie theaters, small theater houses and concert venues are all closed. Additionally, Broadway performances have been suspended, many of the city’s museums and attractions have been closed, and professional sporting events have been cancelled.