Oregon eateries once again in mask-no mask conundrum

Coronavirus

NYC restaurants now require proof of vaccination to enter without a mask

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — New York City just became the first major city to require proof of a COVID shot for customers and workers at restaurants, gyms and other indoor businesses starting in September.

Now Oregon restaurants are struggling to figure out how to serve customers but protect them and their employees from the rise in COVID cases. Some restaurants and bars have decided to make customers show proof of a vaccine to come in without a mask.

Antonio Bonilla, the general manager of the Either/Or Coffee Shop, told KOIN 6 News they will likely put their indoor seating on hold and cut down on their bar days.

“We are getting a lot of flak from customers that don’t want to wear them,” Bonilla said.

In an Instagram post, The Big Legrowlski in Northwest Portland said they are asking customers “to abide, like The Dude himself would, to please provide us with a proof of vaccination while hanging out inside our establishment. Proof of vaccination is required to be unmasked indoors. We will accept your vax card, a photo of your vax card, your mychart showing you’ve been vaxed, etc. But proof of vaccination will be required to enter the bar maskless. … “

It’s a tricky issue since Gov. Kate Brown lifted COVID restrictions such as mask requirements and bar/restaurant capacity at the end of June when the state reached 70% of adult vaccination.

But with the rapid rise of the highly contagious delta variant businesses are trying to especially protect their employees — who, just about everywhere, are working with masks on and get close to customers.

Mayor Ted Wheeler’s office told KOIN 6 News there are no plans right now to require vaccine cards in Portland restaurants.

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