A restaurant in Atlanta, Georgia, has decided to serve only customers who have got been vaccinated against COVID-19.
Argosy Restaurant and Bar, located in East Atlanta Village, made the decision last week on July 21, after an owner and several of his employees, who were all fully vaccinated, contracted the virus as breakthrough cases, according to WSB-TV.
The restaurant posted a new sign outside advising potential customers they are not welcome inside if they are unvaccinated.
“For the safety of our staff, guests, and community…No Vax, No Service,” the sign reads.
The restaurant’s new rules came as Georgia and the country have seen a surge in new cases of COVID-19 infection, and three employees and co-owner Armando Celentano tested positive for the virus though they have all got the vaccines, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) .
“We think we were exposed at different times to unvaccinated people,” Celentano said in an interview with AJC.
“It is a question of quality of life and safety for my staff and guests,” said Celentano. “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.”
The owner claimed that his company has lost “not just a few hundred or thousand, but tens of thousands of dollars in cost and labor in anticipation of a busy weekend.”
“I can’t afford to continue shutting down due to COVID infections,” said Celentano.
With the new move, Argosy Restaurant and Bar joins a small group of restaurants in cities like New York and Los Angeles that deny unvaccinated customers.
But some customers are not satisfied with the restaurant’s divisive new policy.
Sean Villalobos, a frequent Argosy customer, told the AJC, “It’s your right as a business owner, but from a purely practical standpoint, there’s no way you can verify who is vaccinated or not. From a business perspective, it doesn’t make sense to potentially alienate people at a restaurant.”
“I think it’s a bunch of crap. It’s everybody’s choice, that’s what I think,” David Carpenter told WSB-TV.