Wind River Inter-Tribal Council modifies stay-at-home order

In response to local progress made in the fight against COVID-19, the Wind River Inter-Tribal Council has voted to modify its stay-at-home order, according to an announcement today, August 6th. The decision clears the way for Tribal government offices, programs, and businesses to re-open – including the Wind River Hotel & Casino and Little Wind Casino. Both gaming facilities will resume operations at 10:00 am on Friday, August 7th, with special safeguards in place.

Additionally, the Council lifted a 9:00 pm curfew enacted this spring – along with the stay-at-home order – to help limit the spread of COVID-19. Both actions were taken in close consultation with Tribal medical professionals and at the recommendation of Wind River Family & Community Healthcare.

“We know the past four months have put a tremendous strain on the Northern Arapaho people, but it is gratifying that everyone’s hard work and cooperation mean we can now begin to loosen these restrictions,” said Chairman Lee Spoonhunter of the Northern Arapaho Business Council. “The re-opening of Tribal businesses and casinos will help kick-start our critical engines of commerce, keeping people employed and providing the revenue we need for essential government programs and services.”

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The modified order does not apply to schools, which remain prohibited to conduct in-person instruction. Daycare facilities and tribal community halls also remain closed for the time being, and restrictions on large public gatherings are still in effect. As part of the modified stay-at-home order, Tribal members and residents of the Wind River Reservation must wear a mask or facial covering when in public, including Tribal offices, businesses and clinics.

In preparation for welcoming the return of guests, the Wind River and Little Wind casinos have developed comprehensive health and safety protocols. These enhanced precautions include:

  • Casino capacity is limited to 50%, including staff members, and no smoking will be allowed on the casino floor;
  • Physical distancing will be enabled via special signage and floor stickers, plus the removal of certain slot machines, limiting table-game participants and other steps;
  • Casinos will be closed from 2 a.m. to  6 a.m. daily for deep cleaning, including the use of cleansing foggers and the sanitation of all high-touch points and common surfaces;
  • All individuals in the casino must wear a mask at all times (with the exception of when eating, drinking etc.);
  • All casino guests and staff members must undergo a non-invasive health screening upon arrival, including a temperature check;
  • Staff members will undergo regular and randomized COVID-19 testing;
  • Protective plexiglass shields are installed at locations of routine interaction, including cashier stations and customer service desks; and
  • Hand sanitizing stations are placed throughout the casino floor

“Our casino staff members has went through extensive COVID-19 training over the past few months and are excited to be able to come back to work and serve the public in a safe, clean, and friendly atmosphere,” said Brian Van Enkenvoort, CEO of the Wind River Hotel & Casino.

Click here to read the revised WRIC stay-at-home order.

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