Petition to Stop Rollout of 'Vaccine Passports' Goes Viral
UK petition gains overs 200,000 signatures
A new petition urging the government not to introduce vaccine passports in the UK has gone viral, garnering over 220,000 signatures.
The petition argues that the government could use such passports to "restrict the rights of people who have refused a Covid-19 vaccine".
The news comes as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a review of vaccine passports.
Due to the vaccine not being mandatory, the petition says passports "would be unacceptable."
The petition also notes that vaccine minister Nadhim Zahawi MP previously denied plans to introduce vaccine passports.
“The government must be completely clear to the public about the use of vaccine passports & their intentions, which will undoubtedly affect societal cohesion & effect the economic recovery of Great Britain this year & into 2022,” the petition further states.
The government must respond to all petitions with over 10,000 signatures and consider a debate on those that surpass 100,000.
The British public rejected ID cards. Really? When did we have a vote in that? I have no problem carrying an ID card. I have a passport which I have to carry around in certain countries. I have my blood donation card, bank card, EHIC card. No problem for me!— SusieQ (@susiec510) February 26, 2021
But despite months of denying the introduction of vaccine passports, the government has now admitted that it is considering them for travel and gaining access to events, shops, and restaurants.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson was seemingly resistant to introducing the scheme but is being hounded by proponents to adopt it and has promised a review.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Friday the Government wanted to enable people to prove their vaccination status if other countries demand such measures for entering their country.
"We are going to say NO to vaccine passports"— Big Brother Watch (@BigBrotherWatch) February 24, 2021
... or covid status certificates, or whatever newspeak name comes next.
They're bad for trust in health authorities and bad for rights + equality. We won't comply with a future of coercion, discrimination, exclusion + surveillance. https://t.co/YeuaUmJGns
Later he admitted the passports might be examined on how they can be used domestically.
"I think it's best to allow that review to take evidence, to consider all of the broad range of issues, and then come to its conclusion," he said.
"It's right we take our time to think about this."
Johnson said there are "deep and complex issues" with vaccine passports in proving someone's Covid-19 "status."
The petition posted on the Parliament website says:
"We want the government to commit to not rolling out any e-vaccination status/ immunity passport to the British public."
"The government must be completely clear to the public about the use of vaccine passports and their intentions, which will undoubtedly affect societal cohesion."
The human rights pressure group Liberty also voiced concerns saying it could "create a two-tier society where some people can access support and freedoms, while others are shut out - with the most marginalized among us hardest hit."
Head of policy and campaigns, Sam Grant, said, "the road out of lockdown can't ride roughshod over our rights."
"That's why we need the Coronavirus Act to be repealed and replaced with strategies that provide support to help people to follow health guidance."
"That means rejecting proposals like immunity passports which are based on exclusion and division. Instead, we must work to bridge divides with strategies that protect everyone."
Former prime minister Tony Blair pushed the idea of vaccine passports but admitted the usefulness would depend on circumstances.