Bars and restaurants in San Francisco no longer require proof of COVID vaccination; “It’s time to open up our city” – CBS San Francisco
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – For the first time since the start of the COVID pandemic, bars and restaurants in San Francisco were open Friday without local health orders requiring masks or proof of vaccination for customers inside.
Like many local residents and business owners, the Mayor of London Breed was ready to celebrate new freedoms.
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“We are announcing that we are ending vaccination mandates for businesses,” Breed said during Wednesday’s State of the City address. “You all seem very enthusiastic about it. (Laughs) For my part, I am. I can’t wait to go to a club to have a good time without my mask. It’s time… It’s time to open our eyes, it’s time to open our city. It’s time to enjoy our lives after all we’ve been through, to see not only the challenges we face, but also the opportunities that are available to us. To feel proud of what our city has done and can do.
About 83% of all San Francisco residents have completed their initial round of vaccinations while the city confirms an average of 12.6 cases per day per 100,000 residents.
“San Francisco is ready to further ease COVID-19 restrictions and allow individuals to make their own decisions to protect themselves and their loved ones,” said health officer Dr. Susan Philip.
City officials said individual businesses are still encouraged to implement their own vaccination proof requirements if they deem it necessary.
The use of a mask indoors is also always strongly recommended to prevent the spread of the virus.
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The announcement does not affect state guidelines that still require proof of vaccination or a negative test to participate in “mega” indoor events like Golden State Warriors games at Chase Center. “Mega” events are currently defined as gatherings of 1,000 people or more.
“With cases and hospitalizations continuing to decline and our high vaccination rate providing a strong defense against the virus,” Dr Philip added.
The city had required proof of vaccination or a negative test for indoor restaurants, gyms and other businesses since August 2021, when the delta variant of the virus caused a rapid increase in cases.
It sparked a chorus of criticism from business owners who complained that the local health ordinance required their employees to act as vaccine police.
“Over the past two years, our business community has succeeded in keeping our residents and workers safe as they continue to work tirelessly to keep their doors open,” said Kate Sofis, Executive Director of the City’s Office of Economic Development and Workforce. “As the variations spread through the community, our businesses quickly adapted.”
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