Vaccine proof mandate approved

Students waiting online outside Cava in USC Village.
Indoor venues, such as restaurants, gyms, malls, movie theaters and salons, will be required to see a visitor’s vaccination record before permitting entry. (Andrew Kerner | Daily Trojan)

The Los Angeles City Council approved a new law Wednesday mandating people over the age of 12 to provide proof of full vaccination against the coronavirus to access a wide range of indoor venues. 

Effective Nov. 4, Los Angeles business owners must ask to see people’s digital or physical coronavirus vaccination record cards before permitting them entry. Those with medical conditions preventing them from being safely vaccinated and those with religious exemptions will instead be required to provide proof of a negative coronavirus test taken within 72 hours prior to their visit. 

Hector Aguirre, the manager of City Tacos at USC Village, said he’s unsure about what measures his business will need to take to enforce the mandate. 

“I’m not too familiar with the whole situation. I just saw [the news] right now for the first time,” Aguirre said. “I mean, I have heard that other countries like France are already in a situation where the people … have to show proof of vaccination, but for L.A., I’m not too sure how everything’s gonna turn out.” 

Aguirre said because City Tacos just moved to L.A., the mandate might make the transition more difficult. 

“I mean, we just opened last month, so we’re still brand new to the location,” Aguirre said. “We’re still trying to figure out how everything is working now, working out our kinks.” 

Marin Ruiz, a sophomore majoring in neuroscience, also expressed concern for businesses, which she feels will likely struggle to implement the ordinance because of the potential loss of customers. 

“I definitely feel like there’s just so many things that can go wrong, that’s gonna be super hard to enforce,” Ruiz said. “I have a feeling that businesses are going to learn that people aren’t going to want to go there or that people might not be able to access some [businesses] because they can’t provide proof of vaccination.” 

Aayush Jonnagadla, a junior majoring in business administration, said he feels the council’s policy will have a positive impact on Los Angeles, but he expects enforcement and compliance to be difficult for students living on campus. 

“At USC, it’s going to be tough for students to be able to have all of the information about their Trojan Check and also the vaccination requirements,” Jonnagadla said. “There’s also so many different ways that you can have those vaccine cards online, so it’s complicated for people to understand … There just needs to be a standardized vaccination card that they accept digitally.”

Other students see the ordinance as a worthwhile way to combat the spread of coronavirus, such as Jake Kandell, a sophomore majoring in computer science. 

“I think it’s generally a good idea. I think the vaccine is huge. That’s what’s gonna get us out of COVID,” Kandell said. “If [the city is] able to figure out a good system to get it set up to where people are easily able to access their vaccine information and there’s people that are easily able to check it in a time-efficient manner, it’s definitely a good step and a good way to help us slow COVID.” 

Despite his concerns surrounding the logistics of implementing the mandate, Jonnagadla said he ultimately supports the decision because he feels that maximizing vaccinations will also maximize the public’s health. 

“If you do your part, you’re protecting people around you — you’re not just protecting yourself,” Jonnagadla said. “So I think that’s definitely a really important thing and I’m glad that L.A. is instituting that.”

Ignacio Ventura-Maqueda Jr. contributed to this report.