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New law in Florida could cost business, government entities

Posted at 7:05 PM, Sep 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-17 19:05:25-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — A new law could cost businesses and government entities if they don't oblige.

Governor Ron Desantis made an executive order earlier this year banning vaccine passports or requiring proof of vaccination.

Later, Florida lawmakers passed a new law that also includes a vaccine passport ban. The law prohibits businesses from requiring “patrons or customers” to show proof of vaccination to “gain access to, entry upon, or service from the business operations in this state.”

If businesses don't apply, they'll face a $5,000 fine for every violation.

In an email Attorney Jamie Cole with Weiss Serota Helfman Cole and Beirman, P.L. said

on its face does not apply to employees, only patrons and customers. Similarly, governmental entities cannot require “persons” to show proof of vaccination to “gain access to, entry upon, or service from the governmental entity’s operations in this state.” Again, notwithstanding the recent statements by the Governor, the text of the Statute does not include "employees."

The governor said in a press conference Monday this applies to private businesses and government agencies and will be enforced by the Department of Health.

The owner of Euphoria Tattoos in Tallahassee Alain Rodgers said he doesn't agree with this policy, even though he also doesn't believe in asking clients their personal medical records.

At his shop, he said all his employees are vaccinated, but he still requires everyone to be masked up.

He said if other businesses want to require proof of vaccines for the customers, they should get that option.

"I do believe that it is a good step," Rodgers said. "I think if they are implementing that, they're trying to do the right thing and not continue this pandemic."

The rule went into effect on Sept. 16.