Navajo Nation Eases Coronavirus Restrictions For Its Tribal Casinos

Written By Derek Helling on April 8, 2022
Covid-19 Protocols In Navajo Nation Casinos Come To An Ease For Guests

Navajo Nation casinos are one step closer to their operating standard before the COVID-19 pandemic began. The four properties, located within the borders of Arizona and New Mexico, can welcome more guests soon.

The Navajo Nation’s leadership recently announced new guidance to its citizens that includes indoor entertainment venues. However, one important part of the protocol remains in place for casino guests.

Navajo Nation increases indoor capacity

According to the Associated Press, Navajo Nation casinos could be about to get busier. The tribes’ latest rules allow for up to 75% of fire code capacity inside facilities like casinos. The previous cap was 50%.

However, each casino must submit a plan for accommodating the new number of patrons before relaxing their internal controls. Smaller capacities at tribal facilities like indoor arenas still apply, though. The rule there is now 50%.

The Navajo Nation operates four casinos on its sovereign territory that stretches between Arizona and New Mexico. Those are the following:

  • Fire Rock Navajo Casino near Gallup, New Mexico
  • Flowing Water Navajo Casino just east of Waterflow, New Mexico
  • Northern Edge Navajo Casino is close to Farmington, New Mexico
  • Twin Arrows Navajo Casino and Resort near Flagstaff, Arizona

While this means all four facilities should soon be able to accommodate more visitors, not all of the pandemic protocols on the reservation are relaxing. Guests should still observe one crucial rule.

Navajo Nation keeps mask mandate still in place

The Navajo Nation maintains its mask mandate for public places. That includes its casinos. Guests must still wear face masks when on their territory except for when actively drinking, eating, or taking oral medication.

This remains one of the last factions of the gambling industry within the United States to carry such a requirement. Commercial casinos and other tribal casinos across the country have not only lifted all capacity restrictions but also made masks optional for guests.

If the positivity rates continue to decline within the Navajo Nation, further easements might be ahead. For now, though, this is a step in the right direction.

Photo by Joseph Sohm / Shutterstock.com
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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