LA City imposes vaccine proof mandate at most indoor locations starting Nov. 8

Photo by Los Angeles County

The city’s mandate expands on Los Angeles County’s separate vaccine mandate, which was enforced on Thursday, Nov. 4

STARTING on Monday, Nov. 8, anyone visiting most public businesses in the city of Los Angeles will be required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to enter, per a new city ordinance.

The new mandate will affect patrons of restaurants, movie theaters, retailers, and other businesses that cater to customers indoors, making LA one of the strictest cities in terms of vaccine mandates.

Passed by the LA City Council earlier this fall, the mandate orders all patrons aged 12 years old (the current age minimum for the available vaccines) and older to show proof of full vaccination, meaning that those receiving the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines must have had two doses.

In addition to the businesses listed above, vaccine proof will be required at the following public spaces starting Monday: coffee shops, food courts, banquet halls, gyms and fitness venues, sports arenas, concert venues, convention centers, museums, bowling alleys, arcades and card rooms, play areas, spas, hair salons, and barbershops. (Grocery stores are excluded.)

In addition to showing proof at these retail businesses, the vaccine mandate extends to all City of LA facilities and government property.

However, those who have a legitimately documented medical or religious reason for not being vaccinated can instead provide a recent negative coronavirus test.

LA City Council President Nury Martinez, who introduced the motion earlier this year, argued that the ordinance was justified because of the high number of residents who still aren’t vaccinated. She added that this gives those who have been vaccinated some freedom “to go back to normal.”

“No one is forcing anyone to get vaccinated,” she said at the time. “But if you don’t, there are certain things you will not be able to do without showing proof of vaccination.”

The city’s ordinance follows one issued by LA County, which requires vaccine proof (a negative COVID-19 test would not suffice) in order to enter nightclubs, bars, breweries, wineries, distilleries, and lounges.

In terms of the potential confusion that may arise from the overlapping mandates, Dr. Barbara Ferrer, LA County Public Health Direct, said that the county and city requirements are “not at odds with each other.”

As of Thursday, about 72% of county residents aged 12 and older were fully vaccinated, according to the county’s data.

The following forms of vaccine proof are acceptable, according to LA County Public Health (which are the same as the city’s vaccination proof guidelines):

  • The white CDC COVID-19 vaccination record card
  • The yellow World Health Organization vaccine card
  • Documentation of vaccination from a health care provider
  • A California Immunization Registry (CAIR2) vaccination record
  • A digital vaccination record issued by the California of Public Health
  • A digital vaccination record from an approved company like Healthvana, Carbon Health, CommonPass, CLEAR Health Pass, or VaxYes
  • A photocopy of the vaccine card, or a photo of it on a person’s phone.

Starting on Nov. 29, businesses and venues who aren’t compliant with these measures may be fined $1,000 for the second violation (the first violation would be a first warning, essentially), but fines will increase with subsequent violations. n

Klarize Medenilla

Klarize Medenilla is a staff writer and reporter for the Asian Journal. You can reach her at k.medenilla@asianjournalinc.com.

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