CRA President and CEO Jot Condie Reminds Policy Makers and Diners that Workers are Not Vaccine Police


On Sept. 6, the San Francisco Chronicle published the CRA’s opinion, from our President and CEO Jot Condie, encouraging local and state policy makers and restaurant diners to remember that workers are not the vaccine police.

Jot described his own experience interacting with a San Francisco restaurant host who politely but firmly asked him to produce a vaccination verification. Jot used the example to remind policy makers that restaurant staff are in the difficult position of enforcing a regulation they had no part in making.

“Health experts have been saying for weeks that vaccine mandates (for people choosing to congregate in public places) may help to finally get us past this pandemic. If the delta variant of the coronavirus continues to send more and more people into hospitals, then public officials may be forced to return to capacity restrictions and even shutdowns of restaurants — which is an unacceptable step backward. However, in implementing mandatory vaccine checks to slow the virus’ spread, cities are expecting a host or hostess to do a job more appropriately handled by an armed guard or bouncer,” he wrote. “It seems only fair that the cities with health orders restricting entry to restaurants should provide funding for security. Or, failing that, provide an option to send city or county staff trained in vax checking to run interference.”

The published opinion goes on to explain that many “front-of-house” restaurant workers applied for their jobs because they want to work in an environment of hospitality, service, fun and gaiety. Jot urged diners everywhere to extend patience and grace to restaurant workers who are merely carrying out the enforcement orders of their elected officials. “But now, out in front, standing behind the reception stand, is a nervous host holding her breath waiting for some jerk to ruin her day and potentially be subjected to a government-imposed hostile work environment. We need to make sure she’s protected,” he wrote. 

For SF Chronicle subscribers, the full opinion is available here.