New York City will force anyone who wants to eat inside a restaurant, enter a concert hall or use a gym, among other things, to be vaccinated, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday.
“People are going to get a very clear message: if you want to participate fully in our society, you have to get vaccinated,” de Blasio told a news conference.
New York is the first U.S. city to announce such a move considered by much of society as authoritarian.
The move comes after in recent days some major restaurant or gym chains, as well as Broadway theaters, announced that they were going to start requiring vaccination tests from their customers.
The new policy “will require vaccinations for workers and customers in hospitality, exercise or indoor entertainment,” explained the mayor, who insisted that no one will be allowed into any such business who has not had at least one dose.
“If you’re not vaccinated (…) you’re not going to be able to participate in a lot of things,” insisted the mayor, who said the aim of the new measure is “to convince everyone that this is the time to stop the delta variant and that means getting vaccinated now.”
The new rules are scheduled to be fully in place by mid-September, after a transition period that will begin this month.
The New York City Council had already announced in recent days that it would require city employees to be vaccinated or tested weekly, while unveiling a $100 incentive for any citizen who comes in for a first dose at a public facility.