SEATTLE (AP) — At least 60 Seattle bars and restaurants as of Friday began requiring customers to prove they have been vaccinated as a requirement to eat or dine inside as the highly infectious COVID-19 delta variant spreads through Washington state.
The self-imposed mandate includes Capitol Hill bars The Unicorn, Linda’s Tavern, Rumba and Canon, and comes as the state sees a fifth wave of infection, The Seattle Times reported.
At least a dozen bars temporary closed last week after their employees tested positive for COVID-19 or came into contact with an infected person. That led bar owners to announce over social media that vaccination proof will be required to dine or drink on their premises.
“No shirt, no shoes, no vaccine, no entry,” said Linda Derschang, who owns Linda’s Tavern and Oddfellows Cafe + Bar on Capitol Hill and King’s Hardware in Ballard. “This is about protecting our staff and protecting our guests.”
The bar industry can’t afford to shutter again because of the pandemic, and everyone needs to do their part, she said.
Because establishments are making their own rules as relates to proof of vaccination, the self-imposed restrictions vary.
With the delta variant hanging around, it’s likely that the list of Seattle-area bars and restaurants that require proof of vaccination will continue to grow. A list can be found here.