Tuesday night, the Governor of Nevada Steve Sisolak announced that all the casinos in the state will shut down in hopes of preventing the spread of the coronavirus.

The casino business employs a huge amount of Nevada citizens. It’s what the state is known for, and shutting it down will have a huge impact on the state’s residents and it’s economy. All of Las Vegas is about to grind to a halt.

In addition to the casinos shutting down, the governor ordered all nonessential businesses in the state to close. This means bars, nightclubs, salons, and various other non-essential business.

“My ultimate goal here is to come together as Nevadans to save lives. That requires aggressive strategies aimed at limiting community spread.” said Sisolak, “We don’t have time to waste. We must act aggressively and decisively to protect ourselves, our families and our communities.”

Nevada Not the Only Ones

These closures put Nevada in a similar position to the Bay Area and New York City. 6 counties in the Bay Area are under a shelter in place order. New York City, so far, has stopped short of a full shelter in place. However, Mayor Bill de Blasio has banned all public gatherings and closed restaurants and bars, except for takeout and delivery.

Businesses deemed essential include gas stations, grocery stores, hospitals, banks, post offices, and other businesses that are key to the functioning of the state.

In addition to closing down all non-essential businesses, the Nevada governor pleaded with residents to minimize social gatherings whenever possible.

“All gatherings should be postponed or canceled. This is not the time for playdates, sleepovers, concerts, theater outings or athletic events. This is not a vacation and it’s not a time to catch up with friends. It’s definitely not a time to go to the movies. Every social contact increases your risk of exposure.”

Flatten the Curve

The shut down of casinos in Nevada, as well as the other business closures, follow a pattern of shutdowns, suspensions, shelter in place orders and other drastic changes to daily life designed to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

The idea is to “flatten the curve” and minimize the amount of damage the pandemic can cause to society. While the short term results are unpleasant, the measures are a necessary inconvenience to prevent as much damage in the future as possible stemming from COVID-19.