Governments and politicians debate vaccine passport requirements
CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC / CBS News) – The idea of vaccine passports – a form of proof that you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 – has already become controversial, as local government and businesses consider requiring them. They have also become a partisan issue, with Republicans across the country denouncing them as an undue invasion of government and an invasion of privacy.
Next week, California will begin a new policy allowing event venues to require proof of vaccination or a negative test result.
But Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order banning vaccine passports statewide, and Republican lawmakers in states like Arkansas and Montana are pushing for similar measures.
But some companies, including airlines, are already requiring proof of a negative COVID test for customers.
Israel introduced an app-based vaccine passport in February, and the European Union plans to introduce them over the summer.
Stewart Harris teaches constitutional law at Lincoln Memorial University in Tennessee, and says it’s perfectly legal for the federal government, state government, and private businesses to require a vaccine passport.
“If you owned a business, if you owned a Mom and Pop business, and say you work there, your spouse works there, your kids work there, and you have other employees, shouldn’t you be able to to protect them from unnecessary risks by forcing people to come in and wear a mask, for example, or, perhaps, now to show that they have been vaccinated? ” he said.
Still, infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci said the federal government will not impose vaccine passports for travel and business.
The White House has indicated that all potential passports will come from the private sector, with little direct government involvement.
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