Minister: ‘No plans for vaccine passports’

JERSEY’S government is not planning to introduce a vaccine passport system for large events and nightclubs, the External Relations Minister has said.

External Relations Minister Ian Gorst speaking before the UK Justice Committee (31618846)
External Relations Minister Ian Gorst speaking before the UK Justice Committee (31618846)

During a hearing with the UK’s Justice Committee at Westminster yesterday afternoon, Senator Ian Gorst said that the Island was, however, looking to develop its Covid-19 app with a view to enabling certification for Islanders travelling to the UK.

This would be similar to the QR code scheme that was introduced for residents going to France, where the government’s ‘passe sanitaire’ system means that only fully vaccinated individuals are allowed to go to leisure and hospitality locations, such as cafés, restaurants and bars.

This week the UK’s vaccines minister, Nadhim Zahawi, announced that vaccine passports would be needed – by the end of the month in England – to enter nightclubs and attend large events. The decision follows a similar move in Scotland.

In response to being asked how the Ministry of Justice had supported Jersey in its Covid-19 response, Senator Gorst said that it had helped with matters such as procuring PPE and was helping with ongoing issues, including upgrading the Island’s Covid-19 app.

Senator Gorst said: ‘The MoJ did help to facilitate that engagement and they continue to do so as we face that thorny issue of the UK government perhaps having vaccine passports to attend nightclubs and big events.

‘That is going to impact on Island citizens. We are going to need to develop our Covid-19 app even further. They support us with QR codes for travellers to France.’

He added that a certification system was unlikely to be introduced within the Island.

‘We personally don’t see that we will be introducing a vaccination certificate for Islanders to attend events on-Island, but we recognise that other governments are, so we need to be prepared and have the appropriate facilities available for Islanders to use as they travel.’

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