New Orleans becomes the first city in the US to require a negative test or proof of a COVID-19 vaccination to access Hotel and casino spaces.
May LaToya Cantrell announced that Guests arriving at Harrah’s Hotel and Casino in New Orleans would be required to present a negative test of proof of COVID19 vaccination starting on 23rd August.
The strict health mandate will also apply to bars, restaurants, indoor venues, land-based casinos, and racetracks. The mandate will start on Monday, but enforcement is set to begin on 23rd August.
New Orleans becomes the first Southern city to require private businesses to ban those not vaccinated against the virus. New York and San Francisco have also announced similar mandates. New York is requiring proof of at least one dose, while San Francisco bars, restaurants, and indoor venues require proof of full vaccination.
New Orleans to require proof of vaccination comes at a time the number of hospitalization and death are souring. According to local media, the majority of COVID-19 patients in New Orleans are unvaccinated. Last month, the city reinstated the mask mandate.
Cantrell claimed that the decision to require vaccination proof is to avoid returning to lockdowns.
“One of the things I am not in favor of is a shutdown. Unlike this time last year, we have a tool that did not have.”
New Orleans has hosted events that include the Jazz & Heritage Festival this year. Jennifer Avegno, the city’s health director, added that the new mandate could help get festivals and events going back as scheduled.