Mayor Cantrell requires proof of vaccine, negative test at restaurants, venues

Zachary Schultz, Breaking News Editor

Mayor Latoya Cantrell announced additional COVID-19 measures this afternoon, requiring people to show proof of a COVID-19 vaccination or recent negative coronavirus test before entering New Orleans restaurants, bars and other local establishments, including the Caesars Superdome. The new procedures will go into effect on Monday, Aug. 16.

Cantrell’s regulations make New Orleans one of the first U.S. cities to mandate vaccinations. Many local restaurants, bars and venues already implemented vaccine and negative test mandates. The city’s indoor mask mandate remains in place.

According to Cantrell, the aim is to keep businesses open while decreasing the burden on hospitals and city residents. “We will continue to stand to protect the health of our community, the health of our people, the health of our economy the best that we can,” Cantrell said.

These latest measures come with the recent surge of COVID-19 cases, the emergence of the Delta variant and low vaccination rates in Orleans Parish and across Louisiana. The number of new cases in Louisiana now rivals the highest rate of infection recorded in April 2020.

According to Cantrell, the spike in COVID-19 cases stems from individuals who are not residents of New Orleans. “This is what we want to continue to protect: our city, and ensure that we’re also protecting our visitors, our businesses, our children — all of our people,” Cantrell said.