San Francisco will soon require proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 to enter public indoor spaces including bars, restaurants and gyms, Mayor London Breed announced Thursday. The mandate also includes employees.
"Why we are doing this is to protect the workers, is to protect kids. It’s to protect those who can’t get vaccinated, to make sure that we don’t go backwards," Breed said in a press conference.
While the requirement goes into effect on Aug. 20, employees of businesses affected by the mandate will have until Oct. 13 to provide proof of full vaccination "to preserve jobs while giving time for compliance," the mayor's office wrote in a statement.
Besides the obvious public health benefits, Breed also said vaccinations were important to ensure the economy recovers.
"We all have to do our part. We need to get vaccinated," she said.
An overview of the main details of San Francisco's new vaccine mandate:
- Mandate starts on Aug. 20.
- Proof of vaccination will be needed to enter crowded businesses like bars, restaurants, clubs, gyms and theaters.
- Acceptable proof of vaccination includes your CDC vaccination card, a physical or digital copy or picture of that card, documentation from a health care provider, or a personal digital COVID-19 vaccine record issued by the state of California or by an approved private company.
- Local business and merchant groups are largely supportive of the new requirements.
- There are limited exceptions: People only need a mask to use a restroom at a business, for instance, and if a restaurant has a patio, proof of vaccination isn't required for outdoor dining.
- Businesses can ask for vaccine verification in advance and simply check ID upon entry.
Read on for the full details of San Francisco's new vaccine mandate.