BGC welcomes decision to reopen Scottish casinos

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has welcomed the decision made by the Scottish Government to reopen casinos and bingo halls from 24 August.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced the latest easing of the country’s coronavirus lockdown in a statement to the Scottish Parliament, confirming that betting shops will be permitted to switch their gaming machines back on from the same date.

Commenting on the news, Michael Dugher, chief executive of the BGC, said: “We are delighted that casinos and bingo halls in Scotland have finally been given a date to re-open.

“They have demonstrated their commitment to ensuring the safety of their staff and customers, and it’s great that this has been recognised by the Scottish Government.

“We’re already looking forward to casinos in England opening their doors again this weekend, and I hope that their Welsh colleagues will soon be receiving the same good news.

“I’m also very pleased that the Scottish Government has listened to our concerns about betting shops having to switch off their gaming machines. It’s great that they will be back on again from 24 August.”

The announcement follows on from concerns raised by the BGC over uncertainty as to when casinos could reopen, with the lack of clarity putting more than 800 jobs at risk.

Casinos in England are due to reopen from 1 August, having put in place a range of measures to ensure the safety of staff and customers. The measures include Perspex screens, hand sanitisation equipment, track and tracing mechanisms and strict social distancing measures.

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