Montreal

Loto-Québec announces strict rules for reopening of casinos, along with sweeping layoffs

The Montreal casino will only open to the public August 3, with significant restrictions. Masks will be mandatory for all clients and employees and there will be "no handling of cards or chips by the customer."

Montreal casino will only open to the public August 3, with restrictions

Space will be limited and there will be 'no handling of cards or chips by the customer.' (Getty Images/Corbis Documentary)

Loto-Québec has announced it's laying off 2,250 employees and introducing a wage and hiring freeze due to a drop in revenue related to the pandemic. 

Casinos in Quebec have been closed since March but many are scheduled to reopen in July, with significant restrictions.

Under the new rules, there will be a reduced number of players allowed to sit at gaming tables and protective panels will be set up between the dealer and players.

Gamblers will be given rubber-tipped pens to avoid touching slot machines and there will be "no handling of cards or chips by the customer."

Masks will be mandatory for all clients and employees. Only 250 people will be allowed inside the smaller facilities at one time.

Larger casinos, like Lac-Leamy Casino and the Montreal Casino will be able to accommodate 1,000 and 1,500 people respectively, as long as they are contained in different "sectors."

Opening hours will be reduced and extra cleaning measures will be put in place, including the cleaning of gaming machines between customers. Bars and show halls will remain closed.

According to a Loto-Québec news release, the layoffs to take effect July 21.

Dates for reopening:

  • July 13 - Hilton Lac-Leamy.
  • July 16 - Casino de Charlevoix, Casino de Mont-Tremblant, Salon de jeux de Québec, Salon de jeux de Trois-Rivières.
  • July 23 - Casino du Lac-Leamy.
  • August 3 - Casino de Montréal.

With files from Radio-Canada, La Presse Canadienne

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