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Minority business owners decry skill game ban outside AG's office

"That's a big income that we have lost. And still we have not recovered from the pandemic."
Posted at 5:03 PM, Aug 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-02 17:03:39-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Senator Joe Morrissey and minority business owners spoke outside of the Virginia Attorney General's Office Monday to take a stand against the ban of skill-based games.

The ban came into effect July 1, angering small business owners who said they depend on the slot-type games to keep their doors open.

It also comes as Virginia is set to open its first casinos as early as next year.

At the press conference, Morrissey stressed the economic hardship that banning skill games has had on small business owners – particularly minority-owned small businesses.

“Those machines allowed small mom and pop operators to keep their stores open, send their kids to college, pay for their mortgage, and support their communities," said Morrissey during the conference. "The ban on these machines have crushed their businesses and spirits.”

"That's a big income that we have lost. And still we have not recovered from the pandemic, and to put that on top of it, that actually hurt us big time," said one of the business owners.

The state has faced several lawsuits over the ban, with plaintiffs claiming it violates the Virginia Human Rights law.

The attorney general has yet to issue a response to Morrissey's call to action