The District of Columbia government on Saturday will begin imposing a series of COVID-19 mandates requiring proof of vaccination as well as masks to enter any indoor facilities within the city.
The mandates from Democrat Mayor Muriel Bowser, posted on the city’s coronavirus vaccine website, comes in response to increasing infections sparked by spread of the omicron variant.
Detailed guidelines for businesses were also laid out in a four-page document.
According to the city’s website, roof of vaccination will be required in food and drink establishments such as restaurants, nightclubs, taverns, coffee shops and food halls, the website states.
Also, customers will have to show proof of vaccination for indoor concerts, live entertainment and sporting venues, movie theaters, and bowling alleys. The requirement will also apply to indoor gyms, fitness studios, and any place used for group fitness classes.
Indoor conferences will also be held to the mandate.
Deputy Mayor John Falcicchio said previously the mandates won't apply to establishments where patrons normally move through more quickly and keep their masks on, such as grocery stores, pharmacies, retail shops, and museums.
Religious congregations will be exempt.
People will be required to prove their status with their vaccine card, a photocopy, or via an app on their phone.
The new rules come after Bowser reinstated the district’s indoor mask mandate.
The far-reaching mandate stirred derisive criticism among some, however, who likened the orders to restricting people to their homes if they lack the proper paperwork.
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