New York (NBC News) - New York City will require proof of vaccination for leisure indoor activities at restaurants and gyms — becoming the first major city in the United States to do so.
Mayor Bill de Blasio made the announcement at a Tuesday morning press conference. The program, also known as the "Key to NYC Pass," will be implemented mid-August during a transition period before it will be fully enforced beginning the week of Sept. 13.
"It is time for people to see vaccinations as literally necessary to living a good, full and healthy life," he said. "If you're unvaccinated, unfortunately, you will not be able to participate in many things."
While the mayor said he recognized that "not everyone's going to agree with this," he said the proof of vaccination will be "lifesaving."
The mandate is the latest attempt by de Blasio to encourage more people to get vaccinated against Covid-19. Last week, he offered a $100 incentive to city residents and employees who make an appointment at city-run vaccination sites.