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Slowing the spread of Covid is good business sense — for everyone

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Customers dine at Lavelle's Bistro on Monday, Oct. 25, 2021, one week before the establishment will require guests to show their Covid-19 vaccine cards to enter the restaurant. 

After receiving our booster shots, my wife and I decided it was safe enough to travel and we just got back from Europe. While we were there we experienced a new world where everyone was required to show proof of vaccination before they could board a plane, enter a restaurant, see a concert, go to church or basically do anything in a public enclosed space.

It made perfect sense to us that unless we band together and beat this pandemic it could cause us even more emotional pain and economic hardship than it already has.

While we were in Europe we sent word to our management team at Lavelle’s Bistro that we would be imposing the same edicts at our establishment. Starting on Nov. 1, unless you can show proof of vaccination you will not be allowed entrance to our restaurant. I’m only sorry we weren’t here to bear the brunt of the backlash from a host of different sources. When this type of announcement gets attention from Sourdough Jack, you know you’ve made front page news.

We are back now and want to clarify a few things. First and foremost we are not going to infringe on anyone’s personal freedoms but we want the personal freedom to run our business as we see fit. We are not telling anybody what to do, we are just telling them what they can’t do. If you haven’t had the vaccine you won’t be able to come to Lavelle’s.

We’re actually not so worried about those who have been vaccinated; we are worried about those who haven’t been vaccinated. Covid-19 is a malady of the unvaccinated, and we don’t want people getting infected in our establishment. This is not a cure-all and end-all but it is one of the most effective ways to try to stem the spread of this insidious disease.

One might argue that we are trying to protect people from themselves and to a degree they are right. We just have a different perspective. We don’t want people getting unnecessarily ill in Lavelle’s and then taking up critical care beds in the hospital that should be used for the unavoidable traumas that can strike anyone such as a car wreck or a stroke. Covid-19 hospitalizations in Alaska are at the highest they have been since the pandemic began, and the vast majority of them are the unvaccinated.

We will be taking an economic hit by being the first restaurant to do this but if it leads to more people getting vaccinated or it saves one life it will be more than worth it. It only makes good business sense to do everything we can to stop the spread of Covid-19. It is our hope that other businesses will follow suit and ask for proof of vaccination.

We are late to the plate with this action but now is the time to ratchet up our defense against the spread and do what’s best for our community’s health and welfare. We’re proud to be the first restaurant to implement this protocol and we invite not only other restaurants but all businesses to join in this effort to halt the spread of Covid-19.

Frank Eagle and Kathy Lavelle are owners of Lavelle’s Bistro.

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