Rivers Casino in Schenectady to train, hire new card dealers

Rivers Casino is shown on New Year's Eve.

Rivers Casino is shown on New Year's Eve.

SCHENECTADY — Rivers Casino & Resort is looking to hire some new card dealers, casino officials said Thursday.

The waterfront gambling hall was shut down for six months in 2020 due to COVID-19 but was able to reopen in September, and return about 630 of its employees to work.

That was down from a pre-pandemic workforce of roughly 1,050.

The casino said Thursday that through various causes, mainly COVID-related attrition, it is running short on trained dealers.

Candidates must be at least 21 years old. They’ll undergo six weeks of free training on site; an afternoon class (1 to 5 p.m.) will begin March 1 and a morning class (6 to 10 a.m.) will start March 15.

Upon completion, and if they pass their audition and obtain a state gaming license, they’ll be offered full- or part-time jobs.

New York’s casino industry remains hobbled by the pandemic, with operating hours and capacity limited by state mandate and with some patrons reluctant to spend too much time in public places amid the health crisis.

Rivers saw the least-severe COVID impact among the state’s four commercial casinos, but that still entailed a 55% drop in revenue in 2020 over 2019 levels. It has had to remove some machines from its floor to ensure social distancing, and the poker room, a prime assignment for a card dealer, was converted to a slot machine den. Its hotel, meanwhile, is partly shut down.

On the positive side, it was able to move closing time from 10 pm. to 11 p.m., starting Valentine’s Day.

Categories: -News-, Business, Schenectady County

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