Vax proof ends in SF and Berkeley; state indoor mask mandate to end in schools

More COVID restrictions are being loosened in California and in the Bay Area, noticeably with two big changes. 

Starting Friday, in San Francisco and Berkeley, you will no longer need to show your proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test to get into bars, restaurants or gyms. Many business owners are excited for the change.

"This is ceremonial in some ways, but it’s a big deal. It feels like a huge load off our shoulders, and we are so ready to get back to business as usual," said Ben Bleiman, founder of the SF Bar Owners Alliance. 

Customers have gotten used to showing their vaccine cards at the door.

"We’ve become really accustomed to showing our ID, our vaccine cards whenever you go in places. We have it favorited on our phones, on apps," said San Francisco resident Claire Moynahan.

The mandate first went into effect in August with the delta surge. But now case rates are continuing to decline and more than 80% of people eligible in San Francisco are vaccinated, along with more than 90% of residents in Berkeley.

You will still need to show your vaccine card or negative COVID test at mega events indoors with more than 1,000 people or outdoors with more than 10,000 people.

Some businesses might still make their own requirements, such as requiring a mask. And there will still be vaccine requirements at places like adult care facilities, dentists and pharmacies.

On the state level, Friday is the last day for the mask mandate in California schools. This means starting Monday, some schools will only recommend masks.

But individual school districts can decide whether they want to continue requiring them. 

And some are, such as the Oakland Unified School District. 

OUSD extended both its indoor and outdoor mask mandate until at least next month. 

But schools in San Francisco and San Jose are lifting their mask mandates.