WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, during a Steering Committee meeting focused on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on tourism and hospitality, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV) discussed the importance of tourism and hospitality to the state of Nevada and provided an opportunity for experts – including D. Taylor, International President of UNITE HERE; and Rosemary A. Vassiliadis, Director of Aviation for Clark County and the head of McCarran International Airport – to brief Senators from across the country about the impact of the coronavirus on Nevada’s tourism and hospitality industries, and what can be done to reverse this and bring back both tourists and jobs. Also joining the call to discuss the revival of the tourism economy were Sheila C. Johnson, Founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts; Vice Chair of Monumental Sports & Entertainment, President of the Washington Mystics, and Co-Founder of BET; and Roger Dow, President and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association.
“The COVID-19 crisis has been especially challenging for Nevada’s tourism-heavy economy. Our state is seeing record levels of unemployment. With our workers and businesses struggling, particularly in the travel, tourism, and hospitality sector, I have been working to ensure Nevada gets access to the resources needed to help communities combat this pandemic and get our economy moving again,” said Senator Rosen. “In order to bring back not only Nevada’s tourism industry – but tourism nationwide – we need to make sure traveling is safe and build confidence in the public. I’m grateful that we got to hear directly from Nevada’s own D. Taylor with UNITE HERE, who represents over 60,000 hospitality workers in Nevada and so many others nationwide, and our own Rosemary Vassiliadis, who serves as the Director of Aviation for Clark County and in that role leads all operations at Las Vegas McCarran International Airport, which serves more than 50 million visitors per year.”
“President Trump and the GOP have been a disaster handling the pandemic: no virus tests, no on-the-job safety guidelines; no financial support for health insurance, insufficient unemployment benefits – to name but a few challenges confronting American families,” said D. Taylor, International President of UNITE HERE. “Congress must pick up the slack and act with greater urgency and do much more to help workers, not corporations. I welcomed the opportunity to speak with Senator Rosen and Senate Democrats and appreciate their desire to act to get our workers safely back on the job, and to provide the safety net they need to protect themselves and their families from financial ruin.”
“I appreciate the opportunity Senator Rosen provided to discuss the importance of air travel to communities of all shapes and sizes,” said Rosemary Vassiliadis, Director of Aviation for Clark County. “Aviation is an industry that offers so many direct benefits to the tourism and hospitality sector, as well as our overall quality of life. Sharing details of the challenges we’re facing today paves the way for us to work closely together to move our communities and this country further into their economic recovery.”