Not Much Ado About Green Pass at Shopping Malls

YERUSHALAYIM -
The Azrieli Center in Tel Aviv. (Harari Isaac/Flash90/File)

Despite much ado in the media about Green Pass restrictions on shopping malls, nothing much is being done to keep out the unvaccinated at many venues around the country, Ynet reported on Tuesday.

Officially, expansion of the Green Pass to include shopping centers went into effect early this week, but enforcement has so far been lax to nonexistent, according to the network’s survey of stores around the country, from Tel Aviv to Be’er Sheva.

In Tel Aviv’s famous Azrieli Mall, none of the big stores had an employee stationed at the entrance to check customers.

In Rishon LeTzion’s Golden Mall, compliance was spotty.

“We and a few other stores adhere to the Green Pass,” said the manager of the Renuar clothing store in the city’s biggest mall.

“Some customers, though, prefer to continue to stores that do not abide by the mandate.

I am friendly to the customers and choose to adhere to the guidelines. We want to be done with the pandemic… I also know that there are heavy fines for stores that are caught flouting the restrictions,” she added.

In Be’er Sheva’s Grand Canyon Mall, looked like any ordinary day before the pandemic.

In the mall’s branch of the Hamashbir Latzarchan department chain and at H&M clothing store, the Green Pass mandate was observed, but the proprietors paid a price, as some customers seemed to be shopping elsewhere to avoid being checked.

“[The Green Pass] only serves to hurt us, eventually,” said one of the workers at H&M.

The story was much the same at Yerushalayim’s popular Azrieli Malcha Mall, some stores complying with the rules, some not. And in places where the rules were being enforced, there were complaints.

“These queues at the entrance to the stores are terrible. It makes me think twice whether to come to the mall or not,” said one of the mall’s visitors, said she’s a frequent customer.