Northampton Board of Health discusses possibility of vaccine requirement for customers of businesses

Hampshire County

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The Northampton Board of Health has authorized the health director the authority to execute emergency orders. As of right now, no vaccines requirement has been approved yet.

Cities across the country are beginning to enforce vaccine mandates, which requires customers to show proof of vaccination before entering a business. The city of Northampton is discussing the idea.

22News spoke with Mayor-elect Gina-Louise Sciarra about the this requirement, as she prepares to be sworn in next week, “I heard real concern from business owners, which I totally understand. I also heard workers at businesses who really feel this would be a good protection for them.”

The manager at Spare Time Northampton, a bowling alley on Pleasant Street opposes a city-wide vaccine requirement.

“We’re vaccinated. We fully support being vaccinated. However we know that doesn’t stop us from transmitting the virus. So at the end of the day, a mandate like that is really just discriminating against folks,” said General Manager Sarah Blais.

According to the CDC, vaccinated people can still become infected and have the potential to spread the virus to others, although at much lower rates than unvaccinated people.

Blais says the mandates add additional stress to the staff, “There’s just a level of responsibility that falls on the employees in any business that you wouldn’t normally see.”

A mask mandate has been in effect for the city since August.

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