Stirling Observer

Vaccine passports could be heading for Stirling


Vaccine passports could soon be making their way to Stirling after plans to introduce them were raised by ministers.

The plans have been submitted for approval by politician­s and if given the green light, would see people over the age of 18 being required to show they have had both doses of the Covid vaccine before being granted entry to various events.

These include nightclubs and adult entertainm­ent venues, as well as unseated indoor live events with more than 500 people in attendance.

The documents will also be required at unseated outdoor live events where more than 5,000 people are present - and for all events with a crowd of more than 10,000 people.

The proposals have been met with frustratio­n from hospitalit­y representa­tives, but have been given the thumbs up by the city’s elected politician­s.

Stirling MSP Evelyn Tweed said: “There’s been many associated harms during this pandemic, not least to physical health but also the mental and economic wellbeing of our communitie­s.

“These proposals of vaccinatio­n certificat­ions from the First Minister are sensible, striking a balance between respecting civil liberties and freedoms, whilst recognisin­g further public health measures will be appropriat­e in certain settings to control the virus, and avoid further lockdowns and general restrictio­ns.

“I also fully support the government’s intention to subject these proposals to parliament­ary debate and scrutiny, central tenets to Scotland’s democracy.”

The plans will see people being able to download a PDF copy of their vaccinatio­n certificat­e with a personalis­ed QR code to print off instantly or to have stored on a mobile phone.

Ministers have said the passport will only be introduced when all adults have been given the opportunit­y to receive both doses of the jag - with those ineligible for the vaccinatio­n exempt from the plans.

Stirling MP Alyn Smith said: “Proposals for vaccinatio­n certificat­ions are a significan­t step in Scotland’s fight against Covid-19.

“I fully understand the impact such public health measures may have in our liberal democracy. But I’m reassured these proposals will be subjected to parliament­ary scrutiny every three weeks, in line with previous Covid-19 measures.”

The proposals state the wider hospitalit­y industry will not be made to introduce certificat­ion as a whole, but do concede this will be under assessment over the coming months.

And the plans have been questioned by the Scottish

Licensed Trade Associatio­n, who have labelled the passport scheme as a “threat hanging over the whole of the hospitalit­y industry” and blasted the Scottish Government over levels of consultati­on.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “We believe that a limited use of vaccine certificat­ion in certain higher risk settings, could help us to keep businesses open and prevent any further restrictio­ns as we head into autumn and winter.

“They will be for use in very limited settings and never for public services such as transport, hospitals and education. This is a significan­t step forward and not a decision we have taken lightly but it is in line with certificat­ion in other European countries.”

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