Brits may need negative Covid test or antibodies to visit pub under vaccine passport plans
BRITS might need a negative Covid test or antibodies to visit the pub under vaccine passport plans.
A storm is brewing between the government and hospitality sector after it was suggested boozers may need a certificate to get a pint under plans dubbed "papers for the pub".
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Boris is now hoping to iron out the plans ready for an announcement on either April 5 or April 12.
But Michael Gove today hinted at how the certificates would work when pubs re-open from next month.
Speaking to the Commons, he said: "My view on this is that a system that relies purely on vaccination would not be appropriate.
"But what would be right is a system that ensured we could open up our economy to the maximum extent that takes account of both vaccine status but also a recent test status and indeed potentially also antibody status as well.
"But the best thing to do would be to be guided by scientific and clinical advice and then subject that advice to proper, rigorous, ethical questioning, rather than taking an instant, off the shelf, instinctive approach."
This means punters could flock to the pub if they can prove they haven't got Covid, have antibodies or have received a vaccine.
It comes after the PM said "no decisions have been taken" yet on what might happen with vaccine passports.
He suggested people may need to show a negative test, proof they have had the virus, or a vaccine stamp – but refused to be drawn on what it would be for – except foreign holidays.
But when asked again if people might need a vaccine passport for the pub, he said: "All sorts of things are being considered, it's premature to start talking about that."
But he hinted today the vaccine passport plan might not come in until everyone has been offered a vaccination.
Although international travel is currently not allowed, some holiday companies and countries have already began discussing plans for visitors.
More than 28million Brits have now received a Covid vaccine – boosting hopes the UK will return to normal by June when lockdown lifts.
But with pubs re-opening from April 12, Boris threw a spanner in the works when he suggested it “may be up to the landlord” whether punters will need to show proof they have had the jab.
He added: “The concept of vaccine certification should not be totally alien to us.”
But MPs and pub bosses hit back – saying it could hamper the recovery and would discriminate against people who may not be able to have the jab.
Ministers are considering allowing bars and big events to abandon tough rules if they operate coronavirus 'status checks' though.
Struggling pubs have already spent millions on implementing social distancing measures – including arrows and space markers on floors and ensuring tables were set out with a two-metre distance between groups.
Greg Mulholland, chairman of the British Pub Confederation, said: “For the Government to abdicate responsibility and ask pubs to make a moral judgment — it’s just not acceptable.
“On top of having to take on extra staff to serve people at tables, the idea pubs can take on staff to act as door staff for vaccine passports is absurd.”
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