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Las Vegas culinary union slams mayor's remarks on reopening economy

Las Vegas culinary union slams mayor's remarks on reopening economy
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Nevada’s influential Culinary Workers Union on Wednesday condemned comments made by Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn GoodmanCarolyn GoodmanMore than 500 visitors to Nevada have tested positive for COVID-19 since June: officials  Roy Horn of magic duo Siegfried & Roy dies of coronavirus Las Vegas mayor who offered to reopen city as 'control group' faces recall effort MORE (I) who said that measures to safely reopen businesses in the city were “up to them to figure out.”

"In Las Vegas, we've had 11 Culinary Union members die because of COVID-19. The mayor's statements are outrageous considering essential frontline workers have been dealing with the consequences of this crisis firsthand,” Culinary Union Secretary-Treasurer Geoconda Argüello-Kline said in a statement Wednesday, according to a Las Vegas ABC affiliate.

“The Culinary Union supports Governor [Steve] Sisolak's plans to protect Nevadans. We encourage listening to health experts and scientists,” she added.

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“The Culinary Union is a majority of women and people of color, and we are not expendable. Workers will be the reason we get through this pandemic, and workers have to be protected. We demand it."

In a now-viral interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Goodman said she offered the city as a “control group,” and accused Cooper of being an “alarmist” about the possibility for infection if the casinos and hotels were to reopen.

"I am not a private owner. That’s the competition in this country, the free enterprise and to be able to make sure that what you offer the public meets the needs of the public," she added. "Right now, we’re in a crisis healthwise, and so for a restaurant to be open or a small boutique to be open, they better figure it out. That’s their job. That’s not the mayor’s job."

Gov. Steve SisolakSteve SisolakDemocratic North Las Vegas mayor to join GOP White House asks governors for help with Johnson & Johnson vaccine Here's who's eligible for COVID-19 vaccines in each state MORE’s (D) stay-at-home order for Nevada is set to extend through the end of April, and the governor has said any casinos seeking to reopen must obtain approval from the Nevada Gaming Commission.

In a series of tweets Wednesday night Sisolak emphasized that state officials are “committed to protecting our residents & welcoming back visitors to a safe environment when the time is right.”