By LIJ Staff
The Los Angeles City Council has voted unanimously in favor of requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination to enter the majority of the city’s indoor spaces.
Mike Feuer, the Los Angeles City Attorney, will be tasked with writing the ordinance mandating that residents and visitors have received at least one shot of the vaccine before entering restaurants, bars, retail outlets, gyms and entertainment venues after the city council unanimously voted to approve the plan on August 11th .
The proposal was brought forth by Councilman Mitch O’Farrell and Council President Nury Martinez, claiming the requirement was necessary because of the surging cases, and proposed the ordinance to protect the health of the public, but also saying that it would not be a “vaccine mandate”.
“We’re not going to tell someone, anyone, that they have to get vaccinated,” O’Farrell said, according to The Los Angeles Times. “We’re also not going to deny anyone the ability to access essentials—food, medicine, etc.—regardless of vaccination. That wouldn’t be legal, that wouldn’t be moral.”
“But what is immoral is choosing not to get vaccinated, choosing to listen to some delusional rant on Twitter,” he added. “This is real life. Vaccines work.”
But the specifics to the new restrictions have not been finalized, and it still remains unclear if they would include essential businesses like grocery stores and pharmacies. Council members have been instructed to meet with businesses leaders while a final plan is drafted.
According to a report in Newsweek, it is unclear how the city of Los Angeles will enforce the restrictions and if the city will put in place measures to identify counterfeit vaccination records. The time frame for the ordinance to go into effect will be 30 days after it has been drafted. Martinez believes getting vaccinated is the way to return to “normal.”
“If we ever want to get back to normal, to what Los Angeles was like pre-COVID, we need to stop the spread,” said Martinez. “If individuals want to go to their gym, go to their local bar without a mask, you need to get vaccinated. And if you want to watch a basketball game, a baseball game, go to a concert in a big venue or even go into a movie theater, you need to get a shot.”