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NYC to require proof of COVID vaccination for restaurants, gyms, theaters

Enforcement of the city's new policy will begin in mid-September.

For the most up-to-date news and information about the coronavirus pandemic, visit the WHO and CDC websites.

New York City will require proof of vaccination against COVID-19 for people taking part in indoor activities, such as going to restaurants, gyms and theaters. The new mandate, which was earlier reported by The New York Times, also applies to people who work at these locations.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the policy during a press conference Tuesday, nothing that "it's all about vaccinations." 

The program is being called the Key To NYC Pass. It will launch later in August and enforcement will begin in mid-September. Both workers and customers will be required to have at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine for all indoor dining, fitness, entertainment and performances, de Blasio said. 

"This is a miraculous place, literally full of wonders. And if you're vaccinated, all of that is going to open up to you. You'll have the key," de Blasio said. "If you're unvaccinated, unfortunately, you will not be able to participate in many things."

More details on how the policy will be implemented and enforced will announced over the coming weeks, de Blasio said. He noted that people will be able to confirm their vaccination status by showing a COVID-19 vaccination card, the NYC COVID Safe App or the Excelsior Pass app

The new policy comes amid a spike in COVID-19 cases across the US as the delta variant, a strain first documented in India, has become the dominant strain. As of late July, it accounts for more than 80% of COVID cases in the country. 

"By fighting the delta variant we will continue our recovery, and we will ultimately beat COVID," said de Blasio. 

Last week, Broadway's 41 theaters in New York and the Metropolitan Opera in New York announced that they will require proof of vaccination of audience members and staff.

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The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.