More than 70 businesses sign charter refusing to adopt vaccine passports

14 April 2021 by
More than 70 businesses sign charter refusing to adopt vaccine passports

More than 70 licensed premises and events businesses have signed a charter saying they will not demand vaccine passports of guests to enter their premises.

Organised by Alan Miller, co-founder of the Night-Time Industries Association (NTIA), the charter has so far been signed by business owners including Harts Group director James Hart; entrepreneur Luke Johnson; Lesley Lewis, owner of the French House in London's Soho; Boxpark chief executive Roger Wade; Ratnesh Bagdai, finance director of Brindisa; and Peter Marks, chief executive of Rekom UK.

The group is also reported to have sent a letter to prime minister Boris Johnson.

The Licensed Premises & Events Charter – Open For All charter said: "We do not believe it is right that we, as premises and promoters, should demand to see proof of medical records or health status. The majority of people in the UK have chosen to be vaccinated.

"There are many practical and logistical issues for us alongside civil liberty and discrimination considerations more broadly for society if venues or events insist on seeing any kind of health related documents.

"For that reason, we have signed up to the Licensed Premises & Events Charter – Open For All, which means that we shall not be forcing our patrons to show us any documentation referring to health status in order to gain entry."

The government is conducting a review into the role Covid status certificates could have in reopening the economy after previously ruling them out, which would see people having to show proof of a Covid-19 vaccination, negative test or natural immunity through antibodies. Covid status certification is being trialled as part of a programme of pilot events over the coming months.

The government has said vaccine passports are "likely to become a feature of our lives until the threat from the pandemic recedes" and "could potentially play a role in settings such as theatres, nightclubs and mass events such as festivals or sports events to help manage risks where large numbers of people are brought together in close proximity".

It also said they could play a role in reducing social distancing requirements, for example in hospitality settings. However, the government has also recognised the potential implications for businesses and customers and said this will be considered in consultation with the industry as part of the review of social distancing rules.

Businesses and industry trade bodies have said enforcing this would be a "nightmare" for businesses and place staff in a difficult position as well as potentially harming trade.

Photo: Shutterstock

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