Hundreds of hotel workers get tested ahead of welcoming back visitors

Hundreds of hotel workers get tested ahead of welcoming back visitors
Hundreds of people turned out to a drive-thru test site Saturday in Waipio. (Source: Hawaii News Now)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - As many Hawaii hotels prepare to welcome back visitors, hundreds of hospitality workers and their relatives got tested for COVID-19 Saturday.

UNITE HERE Local 5 hosted the event at the Waipio Soccer Complex.

The union supports Governor Ige’s pre-testing program for out-of-state travelers starting August 1. But officials say safe hotel operations also require testing for hospitality employees.

“The truth is, you also have to pay attention to the safety of workers and the testing of the workforce. We’re all in the same building and it’s equally possible for the illness to get in through the community side,” said Eric Gill of UNITE HERE Local 5.

Dr. Scott Miscovich agrees, echoing the need for continued testing and tracking of the disease.

“I stand for these people who need to work and to open up our economy, but we need to put the safeguards in place, which, I’ve been promoting it and the rest of the country has, that’s aggressive testing,” Dr. Miscovich said.

The union says so far most hotel operators, except for the Kahala Hotel & Resort, have not offered testing to workers.

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