In-N-Out Burger has closed its five dining venues in Contra Costa County due to the restaurant chain’s refusal to comply with local health mandates requiring customers to show proof of their immunization status.
The county immunization mandate requires employees to check the immunization status of clients before they can sit in an indoor dining room. The burger chain says it will avoid the problem and stop serving customers indoors at five restaurants in the county and only serve take-out and the drive-thru window.
“As a business, In-N-Out Burger strongly believes in the highest form of customer service and for us that means serving all customers who visit us and making all customers feel welcome.” Arnie Wensinger, the channel’s legal and commercial director, said in a statement. “We refuse to become the immunization police for any government.”
The Irvine-based burger chain informed the local health department of its decision earlier this week. The story was first reported by SF Gate.
Contra Costa County Health Services did not immediately respond to comments on the restaurant’s decision.
The Contra Costa County Health Department briefly closed an In-N-Out restaurant on October 26 in the town of Pleasant Hill for “failing to actively request vaccine documentation or documentation and identification testing with photo “of customers, according to the hamburger chain.
The Pleasant Hill location – as well as dining venues in San Ramon, Brentwood, Pittsburg, and Pinole – is now closed to indoor dining.
The local COVID-19 rule went into effect on September 22 and requires customers 12 years of age and older to show proof of their vaccination status to enter certain interior areas. This includes restaurants, gyms and other businesses “where there is a high risk of spreading the virus,” according to the health department.
Contra Costa and San Francisco counties, as well as the city of Berkeley, all have similar warrants that require proof of vaccination for indoor meals. Earlier this month, the San Francisco Department of Public Health briefly closed the city’s only In-N-Out, Fisherman’s Wharf, for breaking local COVID-19 rules. This place has since opened for outdoor dining only.