SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Citing the increased concerns about the delta variant and to continue to protect their staff, the owners of FnB restaurant in Scottsdale said they would soon require their guests to show proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Owners Charlene Badman and Pavle Milic announced the news late Thursday on the restaurant's social media accounts.
"With the latest trends regarding the highly transmissible Delta variant, we have decided for the good of all to add another layer of safety for our staff —who is fully vaccinated and still required to wear masks, in addition to the same safety standards pre-vaccine—and our guests who have been vaccinated. Starting Wednesday, August 4th, you will be required to show proof of your coronavirus vaccination card or a picture of it on your phone," Badman and Milic wrote.
"We know some of you might disagree with our decision, but know it comes from a place of a deep desire to take care of you and our team. As per usual, thank you for sticking with us during these uncharted times. We have come a long way with vaccinations. Let’s not stop halfway."
FnB's announcement makes it one of the first restaurants in the area, if not the most high-profile restaurant, to require its customers to show proof that they have received the COVID-19 vaccine.
"It isn't political, it isn't something that we've taken very lightly, it isn't something that is against any person or the fact that they've made that choice not to get a vaccine," Chef Badman said Friday afternoon in an interview with ABC15 News. "If they've made that choice, that's perfectly fine. That is, that's the beauty of where we're at and what and the decisions we get to make
"We're making a choice [on] who we're going to serve and who we're going to let into the restaurant and what precautions we need to take to make sure that we're all safe," she said.
The CDC, government leaders, the Arizona Department of Health Services, and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey have all encouraged those who have not yet received the COVID-19 vaccine to get one.
Earlier this week, the CDC updated its guidance to recommend everyone -- including those vaccinated and not vaccinated -- to continue to wear masks indoors.
FnB is currently operating on its summer schedule, which is Wednesday - Sunday evenings. Customers who make a dine-in reservation will have to verify their vaccine status. She said a photo of their vaccine card is sufficient. Masks are also required.
The restaurant is also open for takeout orders on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
In recent weeks, other private businesses, including restaurants, across the country have begun to require customers to prove their vaccination status, according to various local and national news outlets.
Josh Frigerio at KNXV first reported this story.