Elected city officials in Los Angeles introduced a motion on Wednesday that would mandate eligible individuals provide evidence of a COVID-19 vaccination in order to enter certain indoor businesses, including restaurants, health clubs, and retail establishments.
The proposal was put forth by City Council President Nury Martinez and Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, both Democrats. The move comes a day after New York City unveiled a new program to implement similar restrictions meant to pressure residents into getting vaccinated.
“Today I introduced legislation with @MitchOFarrell to require proof of COVID vaccination to enter indoor public spaces throughout the City of LA,” tweeted Martinez. “So many Angelenos stepped up and did their part. They shouldn’t be penalized with closures by those unwilling to do theirs.”
Today I introduced legislation with @MitchOFarrell to require proof of COVID vaccination to enter indoor public spaces throughout the City of LA.
So many Angelenos stepped up and did their part. They shouldn't be penalized with closures by those unwilling to do theirs. pic.twitter.com/ebj0phJ5wZ
— Nury Martinez (@CD6Nury) August 4, 2021
“Hard-working Angelenos, their customers and the general public deserve to be safe in public spaces,” said Councilman O’Farrell. “The vaccines are our most effective form of protection. The time to act is now.”
The motion asks that City Council instruct L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer to draft an ordinance “that would require eligible individuals to have received at least one dose of vaccination to enter indoor spaces, including but not limited to, restaurants, bars, retail establishments, fitness centers, spas, and entertainment centers such as stadiums, concert venues, and movie theaters.”
On Tuesday, Feuer issued a letter to the powerful L.A. County Board of Supervisors urging that body to require proof of vaccination to patronize some indoor businesses, but did not mention retail stores. Feuer, also a Democrat, is running for mayor next year.
More details from the Los Angeles Times:
L.A. County is also “not requiring proof of vaccination for customers to enter specific businesses at this point in time,” though public health officials added in a statement Tuesday that they “applaud those businesses that are assessing risks to their employees and customers and adding additional layers of protection, including requiring proof of vaccination.”
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti “always listens to the guidance from county public health experts on these issues, and there is no such mandate recommended or planned at this time,” according to spokesman Alex Comisar.
“But with cases and hospitalizations rising rapidly, we are not taking anything off the table,” Comisar said. “The mayor strongly urges everyone to get vaccinated, and supports businesses that are taking steps to keep their workers and customers safe.”
On Tuesday, the L.A. County Department of Public Health reported that 20 more people diagnosed with COVID-19 had died and confirmed 2,293 new infections. According to department data, 1,138 individuals with coronavirus were hospitalized, with 22% of those patients in the intensive care unit.
L.A. County health officials said a recent increase in cases “is in part due to the highly transmissible Delta variant and a small number of post vaccination infection among the fully vaccinated.”