Las Vegas, NV (WorkersCompensation.com) – Following the shooting of nearly 600 people during a country music concert in Las Vegas, MGM Hotels immediately offered trauma and grief counseling to all of its employees and guests.
At least 59 people were killed and more than 515 people were injured on Sunday, Oct. 1 around 10 p.m., when a guest at MGM Hotels’ Mandalay Bay opened fire on the Route 91 Harvest Festival concert crowd of more than 22,000 people. Stephen Craig Paddock, a 64-year-old accountant from Mesquite, NV, was identified by police as the lone shooter in the incident. He was found dead in a room on the hotel’s 32nd floor.
A federal law enforcement official told the New York Times that there were at least 20 rifles in the room, along with hundreds of rounds of ammunition, including two rifles outfitted with scopes and set up on tripods in front of two windows that had been broken. At Paddock’s home in Mesquite, law enforcement found more than 18 firearms, explosive devices and “electronic devices,” as well as several thousands of rounds of ammunition.
Starting Sunday night, the Mandalay and surrounding MGM hotels were on lock-down until approximately 8 a.m. PST on Monday, when authorities allowed the hotels to open and the Mandalay to go back into service.
But by mid-morning, the hotel had posted on its Facebook page that it would be providing counseling to any of its staff or guests at any of its properties. Within an hour, the organization said through social media that it had received an outpouring of help from counselors offering their services.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims of last night’s shooting, their families, and those still fighting for their lives. We are working with law enforcement and will continue to do all we can to help all of those involved,” Jim Murren, chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts International, said in a statement.
A spokeswoman for the MGM Hotels told WorkersCompensation.com the company would not be commenting further on the incident at this time. There was no indication from the company whether or not any of their employees or contractors were injured or killed during the shooting.
Two law enforcement organizations, however, did lose employees. The Las Vegas Municipal Police Department said they lost and off-duty officer, whose name was being withheld at the time, pending notification of family. Two on-duty officers were injured, although neither received life-threatening wounds.
The Manhattan Beach Police Department, in Manhattan Beach, California, also lost an employee. Public Information Officer Kristie Colombo said in an interview with WorkersCompensation.com that four off-duty officers were attending the concert. A Manhattan Beach Police Records Technician was shot, and later died of her wounds in the hospital. A sworn officer, who was with her at the concert, was also shot, but only suffered minor injuries. The two other employees were not injured.
“This has been a traumatic incident so we are still assessing the information coming in,” Colombo said. “We will have trauma counselors, peer counselors and grief counselors coming in to speak to anyone who feels like they need assistance.”
Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson said two of his employees were at the show as well.
“Two prosecutors of mine were at the concert, two of my young female prosecutors, close to the stage,” Wolfson said in a Monday evening press conference. “They’re pretty rattled and shook up. This was a horrific event, to say the least. This was a weapon, and a man of mass destruction.”
Providing that support network is a key element in employee security, said Midge Seltzer, president of Engage PEO, an HR Consulting firm, in an article in Fast Company.
“Leaders need to let their teams and managers know it’s okay if people want to talk about it,” she said. “They will anyway; it’s part of the grieving process. Joining the conversation will help you control it, and make it more productive.”
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