The city of Chicago will require a vaccination certificate from January 3 for most businesses that serve food or drink, the mayor announced on Tuesday.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot said at a news conference that the new requirement will apply to anyone over the age of five in restaurants, gyms, theaters, bars and other entertainment and sports venues serving food and beverages in the city.
All customers must be fully vaccinated to enter these establishments, she said, and there is no testing option. Unvaccinated employees of these locations will have a testing opportunity, according to Lightfoot.
“The unvaccinated impact the health, well-being and livelihoods of the rest of us,” Lightfoot said. “To control the spread, we need to mitigate the risk.”
Supermarkets, schools, places of worship, office buildings and residential buildings are exempt from the requirement.
Lightfoot said the city’s hospitalization rate is the highest since last winter’s wave and the number of deaths is higher than the city has seen in months. “I have not been so concerned about Covid-19 since the early days in February 2020,” she said.
The order will remain in effect until the city determines that the risk has decreased and the city has emerged from the current wave, Lightfoot said Tuesday.