LUTZ — Like so many businesses, Impact Fitness in Lutz, has been on a roller coaster during the pandemic.
Owner Denny Locascio says he feels very fortunate to have made it through.
“I feel very fortunate. I’m very grateful for what we were able to do to get back open. To be healthy. And be at the place we are at today," he said.
Locascio says he is still taking COVID precautions very seriously, although he is not requiring proof of vaccinations from his employees or customers.
“I’m watching a lot of the larger companies and seeing what their position statements are on these and how they are handling that. And talking to local lawyers and other people in the area that are more experts in that field," said Locasio.
Some businesses are requiring proof of vaccination.
And full-on government vaccination mandates are in effect for federal employees and in a growing number of cities.
But Florida is among the states that banned vaccination passports and public entities from requiring proof of vaccination.
Ed Dischner is a Vice President with Proxy, a digital identity platform.
“We’ve probably had a hundred conversations over the last three months with businesses and uncertainty is the biggest thing they are concerned about," he said.
They created an application available for people to prove vaccination status or if they are COVID-free without revealing private medical information.
“It’s really to help businesses, and small businesses especially have been most affected by COVID where there is an uncertainty coming back. And it’s not just about regulations. It’s being able to say, can I prove that my members, my customers, my employees are actually vaccinated and safe to come back to the office," said Dischner.
At Impact Fitness, they hope they can continue to operate without asking for proof of vaccination.
“Everyone still wants the freedom to make their own choices, so I think that still plays into it too and you want to be able to respect those people’s choices at the same time," said Locascio.