CHICAGO (CBS) — The new reopening phase means life for those who are vaccinated may be almost back to normal. Add in the new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, and the world looks a lot like 2019 again.
But how will place know if people really got the shots?READ MORE: Oak Park And River Forest High School Ban On Activities Due To COVID Outbreak Sparks Outrage
CBS 2 Investigator Megan Hickey learned the Chicago White Sox were trying something new Friday. It felt like a pre-pandemic game in sections 108 and 109, the two sections where fully vaccinated fans can sit together without social distancing. Those fans have to show an ID and proof of vaccination.
It’s a process that different bars, restaurants and venues are testing out this weekend.
“When people are kind of hesitant about getting the vaccine, I always just tell them get it done because the fast we do the faster we’ll be getting to normal,” said Sox fan Matt Reeves.
Fans can prove they are vaccinated with their paper CDC vaccine cards.
“Any other form of proof of vaccination, but typically is that vaccine card along with a photo ID,” said Sheena Quinn with the Chicago White Sox.
IDs have to match the cards, and they are checked at the door.
Sam Toia, President of the the Illinois Restaurant Association, said many bars and restaurants are considering a wrist band system.READ MORE: Parents Of Michigan School Shooter Arrested And Charged After Manhunt
“The door person, he or she would card you at the door, most likely have to put a wristband on you, in case the city, our business bears consumer protections out here checking, you know, four o’clock establishments and the rules are, anyone in that four o’clock establishment after 2 a.m., has to have a vaccine,” he said.
Vaccinated patrons won’t count towards capacity limits and can take advantage of later hours.
With proof now more valuable than ever, the FBI says it is cracking down on the sale of fraudulent vaccination cards. Penalties may include hefty fines and prison time.
Meanwhile, the White Sox say their vaccination incentives have been well received so far, including the two vaccinated sections.
“We announced it just yesterday and it’s been incredible. We’ve sold a couple hundred tickets in, already, in that seat. I know there are seats still available because we just announced it,” said Quinn.
“Section 108 and 109 is usually where the party’s at anyway,” said Reeves. “So I think if you’ve vaccinated, come on out. It’s a lot of fun.”
The White Sox will offer on-site vaccinations beginning May 24. Fans who get the shot will receive a $25 White Sox gift card for use inside the ballpark.
Fans are still expected to wear face masks inside the park.MORE NEWS: 12 Family Members Diagnosed With COVID-19 After Attending Milwaukee Wedding, 5 With Omicron Variant
CDC guidance still calls for wearing masks in crowded indoor settings like buses, planes, hospitals, prisons and homeless shelters, but individual businesses are starting to make their own calls. For example, the grocery store chain Trader Joe’s announced Friday that customers do not have to wear a mask while shopping.