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SCOTLAND OK'S VACCINE PASSPORTS
9/10/21

The Scottish Government has approved plans for vaccine passports in the region that will come into force on 10/1. The Music Venue Trust called the policy unclear and exclusionary.

The scheme applies to nightclubs and “analogous premises” with a capacity of more than 500 people. The certificates—which will take the form of a QR code available via an app or a paper alternative proving double vaccination—will also be required for outdoor unseated events with more than 4k people, or any event with more than 10k.

Mark Dayvd, CEO of the Music Venue Trust, said the Scottish Government hasn’t properly defined the type of premises the entry requirements apply to.

“The activity Scottish government asserts presents a serious enhanced risk is dancing closely together in enclosed spaces,” he said. “The ‘analogous premises’ in which such activity takes place therefore potentially covers a huge range of pubs, bars, restaurants, wedding venues, hotels, conference centers and pretty much everywhere where celebrations through a community activity are being enjoyed.”

As it stands, the policy amounts to an “attempt to exclude some people from going somewhere at some time, without providing adequate information on when, where, who or how,” according to Dayvd. In addition, no details have been provided on how the exemption should be managed and there is no financial support offered to venues to deliver the policy and mitigate the impact it could have on business. 

Dayvd continued: “Music Venue Trust is not in favor of or opposed to the imposition of health certification. We remain committed to working with Scottish Government to ensure the protection of public health through any deliverable, reasonable and equitable control measures that the government believes will have a practical impact on transmission risk. The policy, as it stands, fails all these tests.”

Michael Kill, CEO of the Night Time Industries Association, said the “ill-thought out” policy will be challenged. “The call for evidence from the Scottish Government has been ignored, and has left us no option but to challenge this, as an industry in the coming weeks, or we will suffer the catastrophic consequences.”

In England, the Government has said vaccine passports will be mandatory from the end of this month but no further details have yet to be revealed.