Heading into 2021, we continued to redefine our post-pandemic resort experience, bolstering Foxwoods’ offerings and driving the resort’s experiential evolution forward, while also keeping safety top-of-mind.
As positive test cases and mortality rates sharply decline, there is a better sense of public health and safety from our tribal members. Our government offices have shifted back to being fully opened to the public and our business entities have relaxed pandemic protocols that were put in place over a year ago.
Cherokee Nation has remained steadfast in its efforts to prioritize the health and safety of its tribal citizens, team members and guests above all else. We’re working with our partners at the state and federal levels to help the communities within our reservation and build back the local economy.
We have strived to find a balance between addressing public health concerns while still providing recreation and economic stability for our tribe and people.
We practice all of the same protocols for COVID-19 health and safety as we did before. It's been challenging, but we've enjoyed good revenue so far this year.
We streamlined and fine-tuned many services such as A and B shifts, as well as drive-thru membership meetings, which allowed the membership to still conduct business while keeping everyone safe and allowing the tribe to move forward.
Despite the challenges posed by COVID-19 and its aftermath, our tribe and casino continue to be successful in addressing the needs and desires of our customer base on a day-to-day basis. As a result, we have been able to navigate the first four months of 2021 successfully.
Our Council declared a state of emergency back in March and had zero COVID-19 positive cases on our reservation until May 27, largely because of strict mitigation measures. Since then, we have seen two surges and a recent softening in numbers.
Initially, we closed down our casino for two and a half months, and after we reopened, we moved forward with tough restrictions. Prior to COVID-19, our legal occupancy was just under 800, and since we’ve reopened, we are only allowing 425 people in the casino at a time.
COVID-19 has impacted us financially, socially, physically, and emotionally. We have had the challenge of paying bills and taking care of our tribal members as well as employees, when no revenue was coming in due to business closures.