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White House Says there will not be a Federally Mandated Vaccine Certificates or Passports
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, Discourse continues over the potential implementation of SARS-CoV-2 vaccination mandates for various institutions and workplaces before their return to normal operating procedures. Several universities have implemented policies requiring students to be fully vaccinated if they wish to attend in-person classes this fall. The rationale behind these decisions comes from data suggesting college campuses might be a significant contributor to local SARS-CoV-2 transmission due to factors such as congregant living and travel from various geographic regions. Of the at least 8 universities including Rutgers University who have announced this plan, all will allow for religious and medical exemptions. The CDC has offered guidance for SARS-CoV-2 vaccination policies in the workplace, but there are no discussions of a national vaccine mandate.
Some experts and government officials have proposed vaccine certificates or passports as a means to resume “normal” pre-pandemic activities, but there have been mixed responses over the idea. Israel has implemented a “Green Pass” to those who have received two vaccine doses more than a week prior or have recovered from COVID-19 with presumed immunity to allow them access to gyms, hotels, and theaters. Applicants’ status is proven either with a hardcopy of their vaccination certificate or digitally through a health ministry app that is linked to the person’s medical file. China and the European Union also have expressed support for vaccine passports, with both planning to move forward with implementation. Although originally opposed to the idea, EU leaders are working toward approving and implementing a “digital green pass” program, which is expected to take three months to establish.
Despite growing support among some nations, not all are onboard. The American Civil Liberties Union previously expressed concern that vaccine passports would exacerbate racial and economic disparities. Some US Republicans have shown disapproval of vaccine passports, including Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who promised an executive order barring the state from participating in any vaccination credentialing efforts. Texas Governor Greg Abbott, also opposed to requirements to show proof of vaccination, issued an executive order on April 5 saying government agencies, private businesses, and institutions that receive state funding cannot require people to show proof that they have been vaccinated on the grounds that vaccination status is private health information.