The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe have announced on Wednesday that they will begin to reopen the Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun on Monday, June 1st with safety guidelines in place.

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont is not happy about the announcement, saying: “I think that’s incredibly risky and it’s risky for the people that work at the casinos, it’s risky for the people that go to the casinos, it’s risky for the region because you have a lot of employees who go back out through the region.”

The two Tribes collaborated to establish new safety protocols and operating procedures for each property’s reopening guidelines, aimed at mitigating the risks for both guests and employees.

Based on the collaborative guidelines, each Tribal Nation has developed their own policies to address the unique needs of their respective property. Consistent with or exceeding the State’s phased guidance and safety protocols, each property has incorporated protective equipment and physical distancing in its policies. Neither property will open its concert venues, buffets or poker rooms and tenant restaurants will be open for take-out only. Additionally, both Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun will be catering to Connecticut and Rhode Island residents only. No out-of-state marketing to New York or Massachusetts will take place at either property and no out-of-state buses will be accepted. 

“We’re proud to partner with the Mohegan Tribe to ensure we develop the most responsible plan for helping the state of Connecticut recover swiftly and safely from the crippling economic impact of this pandemic,” said Rodney A. Butler, Chairman of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation. “The safety, health and wellbeing of our Tribal community, guests, team members and local communities remain our number one priority as we prepare to reopen. With the guidance from our Chief Medical Officer and the CDC, we’ve made significant investments to enhance our processes to adapt to the challenges of the new normal brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Like many casinos successfully opening around the country – we are implementing industry best practices to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. Some of the operational changes will be obvious from the infrared temperature scanners installed at all entrances, to the requirement that guests wear masks and members of our team wear appropriate PPE. Behind the scenes, ongoing disinfection of all common surfaces will be performed at short intervals, as well the replacement of dice, tiles and cards in use at our table games. On behalf of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the entire Foxwoods team, we look forward to delivering moments of joy and celebration that help ease ourselves back into this new way of life through safe experiences and environments.”

“The Mashantucket Pequots and Mohegan Tribe have called Connecticut home for hundreds of years. We have deep roots within our communities and are fortunate to call many of our neighbors team members and friends,” said James Gessner, Chairman of the Mohegan Tribe. “As we developed our new guidelines for reopening which expanded on the rigorous safety policies already in place at Mohegan Sun, the safety of these team members, neighbors, partners and friends were at the forefront of each decision we made. We have spent the past 10 weeks putting extraordinary measures in place including cutting edge technology to protect the safety and health of all individuals who walk through the doors of Mohegan Sun as well as to ensure the safety of our community as a whole. The new guidelines, which were shared with state officials weeks ago, are based off recommendations from experts nationally and around the globe and have been implemented at several of our other resort destinations across the country – some of which are now open or will be later this month. As we enter our “new normal” we are excited to welcome back our team members who are an extension of our Mohegan family and to once again begin working with many of our local partners and businesses to help stimulate the Connecticut economy.”

In addition to the above protocols, team members at each property will receive training on infectious disease (with a heavy focus on COVID-19) safety and sanitation protocols to further ensure guest and team member safety. More comprehensive training will be provided for team members with frequent guest contact including Housekeeping, Food & Beverage, Environmental Services, Hotel Operations, Gaming, Retail, Entertainment and Security.

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