England has given up its plan for Vaccine Passports as Sajid Javid told the BBC “We shouldn’t be doing things just for the sake of it.” However, you can still be asked to show proof of vaccination or a Covid Pass at every venue’s discretion.
The government describes the Covid Pass as a method of sharing your vaccine records and test results in a secure way. The government website states that these vaccine passes are needed for:
– crowded indoor settings such as nightclubs and music venues
– large unstructured outdoor events such as business events and festivals
– very large structured events such as business events, music and spectator sport eventsNHS Covid Pass – Guidance
When this was announced it wasn’t well received by members of the public in the UK. Many felt that the vaccine passports could restrict the rights of people as they may be refused entrance into arenas. This led to an official petition which was called: “Do not roll out Covid Vaccine Passports.”
With the petition gaining 375,209 signatures it demanded a debate in parliament. The government responded to this saying that the passports were for ensuring the safety of the people and that they were to be introduced by the end of September.
However, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Sajid Javid has said that they would no longer be going forth with plans of Vaccine Passes in England. Yet, this announcement was met with backlash by many LibDems and Tory backbenchers, with the nightclubs saying the lack of passports may be chaotic.
This was a month after the government announced that students will not need the Covid Passes in lecture theatres. The department of education had said that it encourages people to get vaccinated, and emphasised the importance of this to ensure that education goes ahead unhindered.
After all this, the NHS still has the link up for getting the pass, and anyone who requires it can get it for both domestic and international use. Some places will still continue to ask for a negative lateral flow test or the pass, to ensure the safety of the people visiting the venue. This includes the University’s own freshers fair, as they have also set guidelines for entering the fair based on the covid status.
Therefore, the actual status of the vaccine passports is still rather ambiguous and vague. While the government says they may review their current stance on the passes if the cases surge, it is still left rather unknown as to what it actually is.
The other devolved nations have set out their own ideas for Covid passports, which may differ from those set out in England.