New Illinois bill would allow bars to give a free drink to customers who provide proof of vaccination

Illinois State Rep. Michael Zalewski has introduced a bill that would allow bars to give one free beer to each customer who provides proof of vaccination against COVID-19.

Rep. Zalewski says Illinois has a rather strict liquor code.

MORE: Pritzker says COVID-19 restrictions will loosen May 14; Illinois could fully reopen as soon as June 11

"We ask that whenever a bar offers a free drink or something like that they do it via the state law," Rep. Zalewski said. "So this will simply add an exception to that rule that says if you're going to offer a free drink, you can do that for the purposes if a person shows you proof that they were vaccinated against COVID-19."


Zalewski has said this is a light-hearted effort to try and get individuals vaccinated, and among his colleagues, the idea has been popular.

"The reaction has been really good. There are certainly some people that feel like this isn't the state's business to get into this, but overall, I think we've reached a point of vaccine hesitancy where we have to do everything we can to reach that next level, and hopefully this helps," said Zalewski.