January 4, 2022

March For Life Chicago Adjusts to Mayor's Vaccine Mandate

March for Life Chicago has adjusted its plans for this weekend's banquet event in response to Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot's short-notice vaccine mandate.

The annual March for Life Chicago banquet will require proof of vaccination for entry, as the mandate forbids the Chicago Hilton from admitting guests who don't show proof. This is problematic for a pro-life event, as many pro-life activists believe that the use of cells lines harvested from aborted children is evil. All currently available COVID-19 vaccines utilized such cells during research and/or production.

Organizers have rearranged the event to help accommodate pro-life advocates who have not had a vaccine. Illinois Review reached out to organizers, who responded in an email:

"The March for Life Chicago is not requiring anyone to receive a vaccine to participate in March for Life Chicago events... 

"While most of the March for Life Chicago events are not affected by the mandate, the Banquet is being hosted by the Hilton, which is requiring either proof of vaccination or a documented exemption for a seated dinner. In response, the March for Life Chicago has changed the order of the evening so that everyone can still participate in the program whether or not they choose to be screened and then also have provided a dinner option for those who choose not to be screened."

The banquet reception starting at 5PM on Jan 8 will not require proof of vaccination, nor will the banquet's speaker line-up (which starts at 6PM). This is because no food or beverage will be served.

At 7:00PM, proof of vaccination will be required to attend the seated dinner. A pre-packaged food option will be provided for those who cannot provide proof, however. Those who take the pre-packaged option can have the meal in an area of the hotel not restricted by the mandate, or they can simply take the meal to-go.

The Illinois Review also noted that Mayor Lightfoot's order includes a religious or medical exemption for individuals. The exemption requires individuals to have a COVID-19 test administered by a medical professional within the last 72 hours. The Hilton has asked that those who choose to utilize this exemption show a letter from their physician for a medical exemption. Alternatively, they can show a letter from a pastor or priest for a religious exemption.