Montgomery Co. considers vaccination passport for restaurants and other places


Montgomery County, Maryland, is considering a vaccination passport that would require people to provide proof of vaccination before entering bars, restaurants, cafes and fast food outlets that offer seating.

Montgomery County, Maryland, is considering a vaccination passport that would require people to provide proof of vaccination before entering bars, restaurants, cafes and fast food outlets that offer seating.

Under the legislation, which was proposed by County Executive Administration Marc Elrich, other businesses affected would include hookah bars, cigar bars, bowling alleys, museums and concert halls. .

The proposed proposal is similar to that adopted in DC. People would also not be allowed to enter gyms, yoga and Pilates studios and places offering group fitness classes unless they can prove that they have been vaccinated against the coronavirus.

If passed by Montgomery County Council, which sits as the county health board, the bylaw would come into effect on January 21.

As a first step, the regulation would apply to anyone aged 12 or over, with a provision that from February 1 the same rules would extend to children aged 5 to 11.

Proof of vaccination would not be required in places of worship, grocery stores, farmers markets, pharmacies, big box stores, public or non-public schools, daycares or homeless shelters.

Documents that would be accepted to serve as proof of vaccination include: COVID-19 vaccination records from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a digital photo of this document from the CDC, or a certificate from Maryland MyIR.

Under the proposed regulations, persons 12 years of age and over must provide proof that they have received one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine or two doses of the two-dose vaccines authorized as of February 15; children aged 5 to 11 will need to provide proof of having received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine by March 1.


More news on the coronavirus

Looking for more information? DC, Maryland, and Virginia each publish more data every day. Visit their official websites here: Virginia | Maryland | CC


Montgomery County Deputy General Manager Earl Stoddard said in a briefing Wednesday that the county was trying to find a more “nuanced” way to deal with the coronavirus, despite record infection levels.

Noting that the county is not closing businesses, Stoddard said there was a big difference between how the virus was handled when it became a pandemic and how the county is trying to contain the spread now.

There is a range, he said, between “managing it like you did in 2020 and doing nothing at all”.

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