Blackhawks, Bulls to continue paying game day employees through season amid COVID-19 outbreak

Game day employees for the Chicago Bulls and Blackhawks will continue to be paid through the end of the regular season, team owners said Saturday.

Rocky Wirtz and Jerry Reinsdorf's announcement Saturday came after both the NBA and the NHL suspended their seasons indefinitely due to novel coronavirus.

Across the country, stadiums and arenas, including The United Center, are closed to the public in an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

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The unexpected ending to the season left many hourly employees without a job.

"Our employees, whether they be front office staff, or our approximately 1,200 day-of-game staff, are family, and we will navigate this unprecedented situation together," they said.

Earlier this week, Governor JB Pritzker mandated that all events with 1,000 or more people be canceled or postponed immediately.

"I do not want to waste precious resources monitoring event cancellations," Pritzker said. "I'm appealing to the civic, patriotic and humanitarian character of the residents of Illinois to act on this guidance immediately without any need for official state action."

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