More bars and restaurants in Allentown require COVID vaccine

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ALLENTOWN N.Y. (WIVB) – There’s a way for Erie County businesses to avoid the mask mandate by requiring customers to be vaccinated. More and more businesses are requiring a vaccine mandate, including half a dozen bars and restaurants on Allen street in Buffalo.

“It’s simpler and easier and less stressful on our workers,” said Marc Frisicaro who owns the bar Frizzy’s. “It’s just a business decision right now, because we can not take anymore set backs right now and I don’t see anything getting better. You know COVID is not going anywhere.”

Bars and restaurants along Allen street are doing what they can to keep the community safe, and lately that means asking to see their customers I.D. and COVID vaccine card.

“Almost all the bars on Allen street were going with the vaccine mandate,” Frisicaro said. “It just made it a lot simpler and easier business wise, Security could just check to see if they have their vaccine card instead of being the mask police.”

Other bars along Allen street requiring a vaccination include, The Old Pink, Nietzsche’s, Allen Street Hardware and Colter Bay.

Mac McGuire, who helps run Nietzsche’s says they implemented a vaccine mandate on Sept. 17th after noticing there was hesitancy from musicians and patrons with stopping by.

McGuire says he’s “happy the did it. It makes people comfortable.” He added that it’s “great to see other businesses do it.”

Buffalo Common Council member Mitch Nowakowski says he respects the businesses in his district for taking the initiative and urges people to support local businesses.

“I think this also shows the business community really taking into account the times that we’re living in, especially during COVID-19, and doing this based on their decision and not doing this on a mandate but they’re doing this on their own accord,” he said. “We need to do whatever we can do to support small locally owned businesses and restaurants to make sure they stay open. This pandemic has gone off long enough and our hope is that residents will take precautions and respect proven methods to reduce virus transmission and get vaccinated.”

Not every bar, restaurant and business in Allentown requires the COVID vaccine. The businesses that don’t have to follow Erie County’s mask mandate.

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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