California In-N-Out restaurant closed for refusing to monitor patrons' COVID vaccine status

In-N-Out's chief legal officer Arnie Wensinger called the county mandate "divisive" and said the restaurant refuses to be the "vaccination police for any government." 

Updated: October 27, 2021 - 7:55pm

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A fast-food restaurant in California was shut down Tuesday for refusing to ask patrons to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test in order to enter the restaurant. 

According to The Hill, the popular burger chain In-N-Out was ordered by the county to shutter its Contra Costa, California location indefinitely for not adhering to the county's vaccine mandate. 

"The Pleasant Hill In-N-Out location received four citations in recent weeks and fines totaling $1,750, all for the same health order violation, before today’s action,” said Contra Costa Environmental Health agency in a statement. 

In-N-Out's chief legal officer Arnie Wensinger called the county mandate "divisive" and said the restaurant refuses to be the "vaccination police for any government." 

"It is unreasonable, invasive, and unsafe to force our restaurant Associates to segregate Customers into those who may be served and those who may not, whether based on the documentation they carry, or any other reason," Wensinger added in a statement. 

Beginning Sept. 22, Contra Costa County implemented a mandate which required all restaurants, gyms, and other indoor businesses to check their customer's ID as well as their vaccination records in order to permit them to dine indoors. 

The county order also requires the staff of these establishments to provide proof of vaccination by Nov. 1 or elect to be tested weekly for the virus.

This is the second In-N-Out to close in California for refusing to check vaccination status. A restaurant in San Francisco closed for several days earlier this month, but it has since reopened.

The Contra Mesa location will be allowed to reopen for takeout only. 

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