The City of West Hollywood ratified an Emergency Executive Order and approved a Resolution to implement proof of COVID-19 vaccination requirements which begin today October 7, 2021, no later than November 3, 2021.
All patrons age 18 and older at Covered Businesses must provide proof that they have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccination before entering any indoor portion of a facility, subject only to certain exceptions. No later than November 4, 2021, all patrons age 18 and older at Covered Businesses must show proof of that they are Fully Vaccinated before entering any indoor portion of a facility, subject only to certain exceptions. Individuals who do not adhere to proof of vaccination requirements may use outdoor portions of Covered Business facilities.
The City’s Order seeks to safeguard health and safety throughout West Hollywood with proof of COVID-19 vaccination requirements for:
- Patrons and Staff at “Covered Businesses”
- City Facilities and City Contractors
- City Employees and City Officials
Covered Businesses are generally defined as:
- Establishments where food or drink is served indoors
- Health/Fitness facilities; and
- Personal Care Establishments
The timeline for implementation of the City’s Order has been modified to align with LA County requirements, as follows:
- Effective October 7, 2021: Proof of one dose for patrons 18 and older is required and Covered Businesses are required to post vaccine verification signage (at the front entrance for patrons and in a visible location for employees).
- Effective November 4, 2021: Proof of full vaccination for patrons 18 and older is required.
Covered Businesses are required to post signage/notifications at the front entrances for patrons and in a visible location for employees. If you are a business and have questions regarding vaccination verification requirements, please contact the City’s Code Compliance Division at (323) 848-6516 or at [email protected].
Downloadable (PDF) sample signs for Covered Businesses:
Additionally, LA County provides the following helpful signage pertaining to proof of vaccination and proof of negative test:
The “Covered Businesses” definition of the City’s Order has been revised to exclude bars and nightclubs that are included in the LA County Health Officer Order. Generally, the City’s Order applies to restaurants, theaters, cannabis consumption lounges, entertainment venues, fitness facilities and personal care establishments. Bars and nightclubs are covered by the LA County requirement and to the extent local bars and nightclubs are not covered, they would be covered by the City’s Order.
- Individuals who do not provide proof of vaccination may use outdoor portions of Covered Business facilities.
- Persons under the age of 18 are not required to show proof of vaccination, which differs from the LA County requirement of 12 and older.
A negative COVID-19 test is not an exemption to the City’s Order and only applies to employees and patrons of Covered Businesses who are not capable of getting vaccinated for specified reasons. If a patron is not able to show proof of vaccination, they may dine at the venue outdoors or order their food to go (or pursue other reasonable accommodations). Modifications to the City’s Order clarify that if someone requires a reasonable accommodation due to a medical reason or disability and the facility does not have space for an outdoor accommodation (or remote/virtual accommodations), a reasonable accommodation may be made providing access to the interior of a building if the individual provides the following:
- Proof of a negative COVID-19 test;
- Use of a face mask or social distancing to the extent feasible; and
- Written documentation from a licensed healthcare provider that the person is excused from receiving any COVID-19 vaccine due to a medical condition or disability.
The City has taken extensive steps to support outdoor operations for businesses with Outdoor Use Temporary Zones (OUT Zones), which provide outdoor commercial space in the public right-of-way for restaurants, shops, health/fitness facilities, and personal care establishments.
Proof of Vaccination and Compliance with Order
Proof of Vaccination may include:
- A CDC vaccination card or equivalent document issued by a foreign governmental jurisdiction (or photo or copy as a document or stored on a phone/device)
- Documentation of vaccination from a healthcare provider; and/or
- A personal digital COVID-19 vaccine record issued by the State of California and available by going to myvaccinerecord.cdph.ca.gov.
Compliance with Order (enforcement) will include:
- Proactive outreach (copy provided of order and posting) by Code Enforcement staff to impacted businesses leading up to the October and November due dates;
- Enforcement will be complaint-driven;
- Businesses reported for not checking vaccination status of patrons entering their establishment will be inspected to observe an employee of the business is performing such activity;
- Businesses reported for not checking vaccination status of employees will be asked to self-certify to the City that they are in compliance with the order;
- Unvaccinated patrons are allowed to enter for order or pick-up services and/or to use restroom facilities while adhering to masking requirements;
- Written warning notices will be provided to businesses found not in compliance and any subsequent violations may result in administrative citations;
- Fines are set using the City’s existing health order schedule: $250 for the first citation, $1,000 for the second, $2,000 for the third, and $5,000 for the fourth, with a $50 administrative fee added to all citations issued.
- Businesses not in compliance after the fourth citation can be brought before the City’s Business License Commission for license revocation/suspension or other available code enforcement remedies. The goal is compliance.
The City of West Hollywood, like cities across the nation and communities throughout the world, has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 continues to present an imminent threat in the City of West Hollywood, across the region, and throughout the nation. Although vaccines are now widely available, many people in the state and region are still not fully vaccinated and the Delta variant is surging. It takes all of us, working together, to protect public health and to move us forward in ending the pandemic.
The vaccination rate among residents in West Hollywood is extremely encouraging – the latest data from LA County Public Health shows that nearly 80 percent of West Hollywood residents (12 years of age and over) have received at least one dose of vaccine.
However, residents are only one piece of the puzzle when it comes to protecting health and safety in the community. People come to West Hollywood from all over the region and the world to enjoy our city’s restaurants, bars, nightlife, shopping, and entertainment venues.
The Emergency Executive Order to implement vaccine verification requirements was issued by the City of West Hollywood’s City Manager on September 10. It was prepared following the direction of the West Hollywood City Council.
Following issuance of the City’s Order on September 10, the LA County Health Officer issued, on September 17, a similar requirement for bars and nightclubs countywide and strongly recommended vaccine verification requirements for indoor restaurants.
The City’s Emergency Executive Order was then ratified by the West Hollywood City Council on September 20 with approval of modifications that account for the LA County requirement to aim to provide consistency throughout the region.
While it is not known if West Hollywood is the first city in the nation to implement such a wide-ranging policy, this wide-ranging policy does have the potential to create more impact to encourage vaccinations than a policy that’s limited to City workers and officials.
For More Information
A downloadable Information Sheet is available here.
For more information, for specific questions regarding implementation and enforcement, or to report a possible violation, please contact the City of West Hollywood’s Code Compliance Division at (323) 848-6516 or at [email protected]. .
Comments about the City’s vaccine verification requirements policy may be sent to West Hollywood City Council at [email protected].