Florida Bans Vaccine Passports, as New York Implements Program

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REUTERS/Ciro De Luca

Samuel Case, FISM News


Last Friday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed an executive order banning businesses and state government agencies from requiring so called “vaccine passports” while New York City initiates a verification program.

The executive order prevents businesses from requiring “documentation certifying COVID-19 vaccination or post-transmission recovery to gain access to, entry upon, or service from the business.” DeSantis said in the order that these passports “reduce individual freedoms and will harm patient privacy.” Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a similar executive order.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the federal government is currently developing a verification standard to serve as guidelines that can be used by businesses and local government. She believes the use of passports will be driven by the private sector. Dr. Anthony Fauci said he doubts “the federal government will be the main mover” of the vaccine passports.

But local government is another story. New York City released an app that businesses can scan to verify a customer has been vaccinated or has recently tested negative for COVID-19.

“Each Pass will have a secure QR code, which participating businesses and venues can scan using a companion app to verify proof of COVID-19 negative test results or proof of vaccination. An individual’s data is kept secure and confidential at all times,” a press release explained.

Similarly, some medical professionals would like to tie vaccines to social freedom. Former Baltimore health commissioner  Dr. Leana Wen believes the vaccine should be used as a “ticket back to pre-pandemic life.”  She told CNN’s Chris Cuomo ” I think the CDC and Biden administration needs to come out a lot bolder and say, ‘If you are vaccinated, you can do all these things. Here are all these freedoms you have.'” She said “otherwise, people are going to go out and enjoy these freedoms” regardless of their immunity status.

Meanwhile in the UK 70 British lawmakers are pushing back against implementing vaccine passports in their country. The British government is now reviewing the idea. A passport would be required to enter crowded areas like bars or sporting events.  Prime Minister Boris Johnson has also said something similar would be required for international travel. The WHO currently does not support requring such verification for travel.

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