In-N-Out, a popular California burger chain, was forced to close its only outlet in San Francisco last week after failing to comply with the city’s requirement for all restaurants to check their indoor vaccination cards.
The restaurant closed all operations Oct. 14, but has since reopened for al fresco dining and takeaway following mandate compliance measures, the San Francisco Department of Health said in a statement Wednesday.
“Public health officials have directly informed In-N-Out Burger representatives on several occasions to require proof of vaccination,” the department said, adding that reminders of other restaurants in the city were not required.
In-N-Out did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Wednesday. But The San Francisco Chronicle reported that In-N-Out chief legal and commercial director Arnie Wenzinger said in a statement, “We refuse to become the vaccination police for any government.”
According to the company’s website, the network has 257 locations in California.
Tensions are emerging as the country continues to grapple with pandemic mandates, highlighting the challenges facing hospitality workers tasked with enforcing masking and vaccination regulations in some places.
The property owner also received a violation notice, according to the city.
The health ministry said businesses have several options for working that do not require vaccination screening.
“The vast majority of businesses have worked in partnership with the city to protect public health, realizing that the health and safety of our community remains our top priority and our reopening depends on how we get the virus under control,” the department said.
On Twitter, the city’s approach was more playful and included a tweet suggesting that the restaurant’s name be changed to “In-N-Out (side).”