US restaurant refuses service for unvaccinated people after infections among vaccinated staff

( Business Insider )

An Atlanta, Georgia restaurant owner decided only to serve fully vaccinated customers.

The restaurant announced the rule on Instagram earlier this week, showing a "No Vax, No Service" sign that aims to reduce the spread of the virus inside the establishment.

Armando Celentano, a co-owner of Argosy Restaurant and Bar told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution the decision came after he and three of his employees tested positive for the virus even though they are all fully vaccinated, marking an instance of breakthrough infections.

"It is a question of quality of life and safety for my staff and guests," Celentano told the outlet. "It's a privately owned, small business and I have to do what I think is right to protect the people who rely on me to make a living."

Approximately 38% of people in Georgia are fully vaccinated, according to data from the New York Times. As the more contagious Delta variant spreads throughout the US, vaccinated people are not 100% immune and could still become infected with Covid-19.

"Covid-19 vaccines are effective and are a critical tool to bring the pandemic under control," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. "However, no vaccines are 100% effective at preventing illness in vaccinated people. There will be a small percentage of fully vaccinated people who still get sick, are hospitalized, or die from Covid-19."

The rule sparked mixed emotions from some residents who spoke to Atlanta's WSB-TV. One person told the outlet the mandate is "a bunch of crap." Another said it's "unfortunate" because they don't want the shot.

Despite the pushback, Celentano told the outlet he has no problem asking customers if they are fully vaccinated.

"This is no different than 'no shoes, no shirt, no service," he said.

Dr. Anthony Fauci said in a White House briefing earlier this month that it was "reasonable" to assume fully vaccinated people are less likely to spread Covid-19 infections, even with a "breakthrough" case, Insider's Andrea Michaelson previously reported.

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