Hastings Racetrack Forced To Close During Olympics

Last modified on March 10th, 2009

I just heard this on the news, and it’s the kind of thing that makes my blood boil. The Hastings Racetrack is being forced to close for a month during the Olympics due to security concerns by VANOC. Lots of employees will be out of work, and some may even lose their jobs.

Given the Olympics are supposed to help the economy, it’s rather ironic that VANOC is forcing some people out of work. Shouldn’t the rights of the individual business owners be respected, regardless of what VANOC wants?

One response to “Hastings Racetrack Forced To Close During Olympics”

  1. Gregg says:

    As I understood the news stories, plans for the venues were made years ago and there was no issue as the race track is closed in the winter. Then the race track applied for a casino license, and they were told there would be an issue having that within the security zone, and they gladly agreed to shut down for that time period as a pre-condition to getting the casino license.

    That would fit in with my families experience; we owned a hotel room in the Westin Whistler back when the bid was being made and all owners had to agree that their rooms would be available to rent to the general public during the events. These things are not last minute, but carefully pre-planned and communicated.

    I of course feel for those workers, but I’d put the blame on their employer if it was known all along and not communicated. My own blood would be boiling if my employer told me about a planned layoff that they’d known about since before my employment. Additionally, a good employer would also have been arranging alternative employment, as obviously 200 experienced hospitality workers would be a hot commodity during the Olympics. I’m sure they’ll all find temp work during the Olympics to cover their layoff, likely many of them will be right next door in the Pacific Coliseum; but why couldn’t the casino have told them ahead of time and helped arrange such opportunities?

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