Restaurants Sue New York Over Vaccine Mandate

New York City mayor Bill de Blasio issued a proof of vaccination mandate for staff and dine-in customers at restaurants, bars, gyms and other entertainment venues starting mid-September.

After de Blasio’s announcement, the Independent Restaurant Owners Association Rescue (IROAR) filed a lawsuit with the Supreme Court against the city, calling the mayor’s order unconstitutional, “arbitrary, irrational, unscientific and unlawful.”

The lawsuit says the order has made it impossible for anyone who chooses not to be vaccinated to work in the mandated industries, depriving them of their livelihood.

IROAR argues there is no option for those who wear a mask and provide a recent, negative COVID test. The lawsuit also highlights the mandate is targeting some businesses and not others that also offer long periods of social interaction, such as churches, hair salons, and schools.

“It is also an uncontested fact that unvaccinated and vaccinated individuals can both contract Covid-19 and the Delta variant, further illustrating the arbitrariness of this executive order,” the lawsuit reads.

Some restaurant owners have expressed their doubts about effectively managing the vaccination statuses and are concerned the mandates would deter customers and staff.

As the city reviews the lawsuit, de Blasio has released some guidance and customer rights documentation.