B.C.’s hospitality industry concerned about anger over COVID-19 vaccine cards

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A protest took place in Vancouver on Wednesday against the vaccine and vaccine passports, although fewer people were in attendance than last week’s rally.

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Amid the protests, some leaders in B.C.’s hospitality industry have expressed concern about what could happen when the province’s vaccine card plan goes into effect next week.

“There’s been a lot of advertising about this, the government is pretty clear about what’s going on,” said Jeff Guignard, executive director of the Alliance of Beverage Licensees.

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“If people are showing up and they don’t have vaccine passports ready, we know they’re going to fight, and that’s completely unacceptable.”

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“In every restaurant and bar in British Columbia you’ll see a sign that says, ‘By order of the government and by order of the provincial health officer, we must do this,'” said Ian Tostensen of the BC Restaurant Association.

The jury is out on whether the process of checking vaccine cards for restaurants and bars will be straightforward or problematic. Bars and nightclubs can be an advantage because they already have ID checking staff.

“There are some restaurants that don’t have greeters and they have to keep people in,” Tostensen said.

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Some businesses may hire security guards to avoid collisions.

“We’re getting a lot of inquiries,” said Michael Jagger of Provident Security. “You don’t want to be abused just for doing what the law says they should do.”

On Tuesday, B.C. Premier John Horgan indicated that the province could help businesses with some of these new spending.

Andrew McWilliam of Ratio Coffee & Pastry in Vernon, B.C., says his business has been subjected to bogus one-star online reviews and derogatory comments on social media, saying that they follow the rules set for restaurants like his. would follow.

He says the public can play a part in supporting local businesses that are playing by the rules.

“There are too many restaurants, too many chains, too many that are doing the right thing and trying to protect their patrons and their employees,” he said. “So reward them with good reviews and drive away the negativity with positivity.”

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