Some Prague restaurants and bars refuse to check customer vaccination status
Some Prague restaurant and bar operators question the effectiveness of coronavirus infectiousness control of guests. Somewhere, despite the obligation to carry them out, they will not continue to inform guests about the applicable regulations. Entrepreneurs in gastronomy are convinced that the restriction will lead to a decrease in guests, they expect a decrease in sales of up to several tens of percent. According to them, the government should therefore present a solution to the economic impacts of this step. This follows from the answers of restaurateurs to the question of ČTK. A fine of up to three million crowns is imminent for violating an extraordinary measure of the Ministry of Health. They can be checked by regional hygienic stations and the police. Since the spring, hygienists have performed over 45,000 inspections focused on anti-epidemic measures.
At a special meeting on Wednesday, the government decided that from 1 November, catering operators will have to check with guests a certificate of completed vaccination, covid-19 or a valid negative test. They will not allow a customer who does not prove the document to enter the company or provide him with a service.
“No pub with a minimal relationship with the customer can want any potentially embarrassing, unpleasant lustration test for the guest. I can imagine it in a fast food where there is no relationship with the customer, but in a restaurant I would rather slap me than humiliate the guest like this. , “said restaurateur Michal Kozlíček. According to him, the operators of gastronomic establishments do not even have the right to find out anything about the health condition of the guest. As they cannot guarantee the authenticity of the certificate, the check is meaningless.
At rush hour and in the current staff situation, Kozlíček cannot even imagine how employees could manage to carry out these inspections. He will put a sign on current regulations in the restaurant and bar and leave the responsibility for compliance to the guests. “We will not pretend to be in control,” he said.
The staff of Vinograf wine bars will ask for proof of infectivity at the table when ordering. “Since the government has not provided any details on the documents proving infectivity and the restaurant operator is not authorized to identify the guest, the inspection will be a simple visual assessment of whether the document has a guest. He is responsible for the quality himself. operation of the restaurant through this inspection process, “said Vinograf co-owner Jan Horešovský.
Horešovský has doubts about the effectiveness of the measure. In the past, however, according to him, it has been proven that any restriction leads to a decrease in traffic. According to him, the state should not leave the decline in sales to restaurateurs. He should offer help, such as the one he is introducing for car companies, he said. The government wants to include them in the program to support employment Antivirus.
In the SmetanaQ and Slavia cafés, the employees will also check the guests after they have settled down, said Petra Onderková on behalf of the companies. According to her, it will burden the staff and increase the waiting time for the order. According to her, this will mean the need to hire another worker for many facilities.
“The shocking news for us was the announcement that the measures do not apply to food courts in shopping centers due to complex customer control. If the control really cannot be performed, the same measures should apply when entering shopping centers,” Onderková said.
The government also decided on Wednesday that unvaccinated people will not have a coronavirus prevention test further covered by health insurance from November 1. In addition, it shortened their validity. According to Onderková, these steps, together with the introduction of control in the hospitality industry, will lead to the fact that mostly only fully vaccinated people will come to restaurants. He estimates a decrease in sales of up to several tens of percent. According to her, there is a risk that the measures will not be complied with and that the epidemic situation will worsen. “The introduction of these measures will not stop the growth curve of the epidemic as well, so we can expect the government to gradually tighten again in selected and ‘proven’ sectors as in the past – culture, education and hospitality,” she added.
The Prague gastronomic concept Manifesto, which works outdoors and people order refreshments themselves at the windows, understands the new government measure in such a way that it is subject to the rules applicable to dining areas in shopping malls. “We will train the part of the staff who, for example, deals with table reservations or beverage service, in order to ask guests to look at the test card or vaccinations,” Radka Ondráčková said for the Manifesto. According to her, the effort will continue to protect the health of customers and staff. New glamping tents with separate seating for smaller groups of guests are in operation, and the plan is to install translucent protective blinds in the dispensing windows.
An extraordinary measure of the Ministry of Health, which regulates the operation of restaurants, is issued in accordance with the Public Health Protection Act and the so-called pandemic Act. In both, there is a maximum sanction for violating the law of three million crowns for legal entities, with repeated even more one million crowns more. Up to a million individuals are at risk, and two million if they are committed repeatedly. From the current obligation of the visitor to prove infectivity during the inspection, from 1 November the obligation passes to the operator, who must check it.