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Mayor’s Office To Tighten Restrictions On Indoor Bar and Fitness Services Starting Friday

By Mª del Rosario Castro Díaz

Chicago retightens rules

Mayor Lightfoot’s office has announced it will be reinstating certain COVID-19 restrictions in order to avoid a resurgence in cases.

On Monday, July 20, the Mayor’s office announced it would be reinstating a series of COVID-19 restrictions affecting indoor service at bars, restaurants and breweries as well as gyms and personal services. This “re-tightening” comes as a precautionary move against the recent rise in cases Chicago has seen in the past weeks.

“We have made so much progress here in Chicago in containing the spread of the virus, protecting our health system and saving lives, and in general, the virus remains under control locally. But we are again seeing a steady increase in new cases,” said Mayor Lightfoot on a recent press release. “While we aren’t near the peak of the pandemic from earlier this year, none of us wants to go back there, and we feel these restrictions will help limit further community spread.”

The restrictions will crack down on indoor bar service, as well as indoor fitness classes and personal services that require taking off face coverings such as shaves and facials. Here are the new rules:

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  • Bars, taverns, breweries and other establishments that serve alcohol for on-site consumption without a Retail Food license will no longer be able to serve customers indoors.
    • Restaurants that serve alcohol will be allowed to continue to operate as long as they abide by ongoing COVID-19 guidance and existing regulations.
    • Establishments without food may still provide outdoor service as they did under phase three.”
  • Maximum party size and table occupancy at restaurants, bars, taverns and breweries will be reduced to six people.
  • Indoor fitness class size will be reduced to a maximum of 10 people.
  • Personal services requiring the removal of face coverings will no longer be permitted (shaves, facials, etc.).
  • Residential property managers will be asked to limit guest entry to five per unit to avoid indoor gatherings and parties.

To allow businesses to prepare the new restrictions will be implemented starting Friday, July 24,  while city officials will continue to assess results daily and make adjustments as needed.

See also: The MCA Is Reopening This Week With A Month Of Free Admission

[Featured image: Patrick Tomasso via Unsplash]