Proof of vaccination for indoor spaces may be coming to Chicago. Some restaurants push back

Coronavirus

CHICAGO — A Covid precaution that’s already in other major cities may be on its way to Chicago.

Chicago restaurants and other indoor entertainment venues may soon be required to verify proof of vaccination.

Some Chicago restaurants are pushing back.

Restaurants in cities like New York, San Francisco and New Orleans already have a requirement in place.

The mandate would also include bars, movie theaters and concert halls.

The idea is being advocated by eight Chicago council members. Those members recently sent a letter to the city’s health director and the mayor.

Chicago Restaurants Coalition is pushing hard against the mandate.

Some restaurant owners argue it is difficult for restaurants, already having a hard time finding qualified servers, to handle the additional responsibility of checking for proof and enforcing it.

Alderman Scott Waguespack is one of the council members who support the mandate.

“It is worthy to have a discussion about  health issues and what the impacts may or may not be,” he said. “The CDPH would ultimately determine what is necessary to keep citizens and customers safe during a pandemic.” 

 But instead of vaccine proof verification, the CRC wants the city to double down on reaching out to areas where vaccination rates are low. They believe a variety of incentives could help.

The CRC also says the city could demand money already allocated in congress is restaurant relief act to give to the many struggling Chicago restaurants to keep them afloat.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot has said previous that she’s monitoring the situation and how it’s faring in other cities.

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