Since the last few days, we all see a new vaccine passport everywhere. This new vaccine passport and the discussion around it suggest a possible expansion in use. Their use may not be limited to controls at international borders but may also include domestic and local uses. This also involves people having to prove their identities and show a vaccine passport when entering a shopping center or public office, traveling by bus or train, or visiting a doctor or hairdresser.
Planning of Vaccine Passport in Different Countries
Sweden and Denmark plan to have vaccine passports ready by the summer, and it seems clear that these passports will also be for domestic use. In the UK, the introduction of vaccine passports is under discussion, and their potential use is envisioned. In Israel, a “green passport” has already been activated, and it gives certain benefits like tending significant events or visiting malls or cafés. The European Union has introduced the “Green Certificate,” a digital or paper vaccine passport that would allow every resident in the EU to prove they’ve either been vaccinated, recently received a negative Covid-19 test or recovered from Covid-19. In China, the compulsory infection-tracking system entails virtually total surveillance of the population. The citizens are supposed to update their health status about whether they can go into shops, cafes, or work.
In the United States, different areas are adopting different approaches. For example, New York is testing an “Excelsior Pass” that will allow theatres and large venues like Madison Square Garden to reopen, while Hawaii is developing a passport that will enable visitors to bypass the state’s 10-day quarantine requirement.
Some people are so busy observing one side of the vaccine passport that they have forgotten to notice the different side. With some positive facts, the passport is also a big threat to data protection and cybersecurity. Some people are also concerned with another aspect of internal vaccine passports that they could contribute to creating boundaries, dividing lines, and discrimination within our society. It may be well suited to undermining our open, democratic, and equal society.
The vaccine passport as checkpoint permits could widen the use of and access to medical records. Commercial actors like airlines and shopping centers would be Able to require you to register as vaccinated or unvaccinated. If you are unable to be vaccinated, these companies would be able to demand an explanation, asking you sensitive information about your health – and if one first opened the door to such a development, there would be a risk of more medical information being added to the vaccine passport.
Nicole Errett, a public health expert at the University of Washington, echoed those concerns. “If vaccines become a passport to doing different things, we’re going to see the communities that have been already hardest hit by Covid being left behind,” she said.
What About Unvaccinated People?
A covid-19 vaccine passport that could be used to control everyday life would take away all the freedom to choose whether to be vaccinated compulsory. If the vaccine passport became a general internal passport just like a checkpoint permit, unvaccinated people would be cut off from living everyday life. Some people who do not want to get vaccinated (because they have all the rights to choose) or other diseases, allergies, or poor health cannot be vaccinated and are prohibited from living a normal life.
Introducing the separate Covid-19 vaccine passport is a bad idea that will lead to data insecurity and God knows what more. It’s time to raise your voice and actions, people. Do not let them play with your privacy.
Do you support a vaccine passport?
Do you think humans have any threat from vaccine passports?
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