LA County To Enforce Vaccine Mandate for Bars, Nightclubs

Order disproportionately affects black and Hispanic communities

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• September 16, 2021 11:50 am


Los Angeles County will require patrons to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination at bars, wineries, and nightclubs, according to the county's public health director.

The order, which the county plans to issue later this week, will require customers to have at least one vaccine dose by Oct. 7 and proof of full vaccination by Nov. 4. The county will also require attendees of outdoor events with more than 10,000 people to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test.

While the county says the order is a "reasonable path forward" to curb coronavirus cases, similar policies have faced criticism for disproportionately impacting minority communities. In Los Angeles County, only 52 percent of black residents and 61 percent of Latinos have received at least one dose of a vaccine, compared with 70 percent of white residents.

After New York City announced a vaccine mandate last month for its restaurants and bars, Boston mayor Kim Janey (D.) compared so-called vaccine passports to slave papers, saying, "There's a long history in this country of people needing to show their papers—whether we're talking about … during slavery, post-slavery."

Los Angeles County says the order will "align with President Biden," who announced a vaccine mandate last week for employees of federal agencies and businesses with more than 100 workers. The president last month also encouraged cities to enforce vaccine mandates for indoor venues.

"You have to give proof that you've been vaccinated or you can't come in," Biden told reporters.

Los Angeles County has enforced some of the most draconian COVID restrictions in the country. Earlier this year, the county banned restaurants from turning on televisions to discourage indoor gatherings.

Published under: Los Angeles