Kroenke Sports and Entertainment has pledged to pay part-time and hourly employees for the next 30 days, effectively providing compensation to Pepsi Center workers as the coronavirus pandemic halts the NBA and NHL seasons.
KSE–which owns the NBA’s Denver Nuggets and NHL’s Colorado Avalanche, among other teams–revealed on Sunday night that it plans to pay all of its part-time and hourly employees for the next 30 days. This covers employees at several venues, including Denver’s Pepsi Center, and comes during a period of great uncertainty for the sports and entertainment worlds in the face of the evolving response by public health officials and elected leaders to the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
In the face of the suspended or delayed seasons for several professional sports leagues, the economic uncertainty facing part-time and hourly employees is an issue that has been discussed frequently in the last few days. With its pledge, KSE joins a number of owners and players that have announce plans to help hourly employees. More from The Denver Post:
“One of the many consequences of the pandemic is its effect on area businesses of all sizes,” KSE vice chairman Josh Kroenke said in a statement. “Many companies – in particular the service industry – are temporarily laying off hardworking employees due to the cancellation of events amid an uncertain future. Our hourly KSE event staff plays an integral role in ensuring our fan experience is first class in every way, and it is with these thoughts in mind that KSE will continue to pay its part-time and hourly employees for the next 30 days. We also have asked our vendors and partners to do the same.”
Since the NBA suspended its operations Wednesday night, roughly two-thirds of the league’s owners have committed to paying part-time workers during the hiatus. Superstars like Kevin Love, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Zion Williamson, Blake Griffin and Rudy Gobert have all pledged significant sums of money to aid arena workers who’ve lost work as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The coronavirus pandemic has led to a loss of event dates at arenas not just because of the NBA and NHL halting play, but also because of suspensions for other sports leagues and entertainment such as concert tours. There is still a significant amount of uncertainty facing the arena landscape, including questions about when the NBA and NHL could resume play, so the issue of compensation for part-time and hourly employees who have lost work because of cancelled or postponed events figures to be the subject of an ongoing discussion.
With hourly news about the spread of the coronavirus impacting the sports-business and facilities industries, it’s more important than ever to stay up with the latest news in the venues industry. That’s why we’re launching a new Venues Digest newsletter focusing on coronavirus information across the ballparks, arenas, stadiums, theater and performing-arts worlds. For now it will appear daily, and for now it will be free of charge. Sign up here.
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