Canada’s largest daily newspaper urges feds to green-light vaccination passports

Momentum gaining for vaccination passports with EC’s ‘Digital Green Pass’ for EU travel

TORONTO — Momentum for vaccination passports appears to be gaining with reports that the European Commission could announce pans for a new EU-wide digital passport.

According to wire service Reuters, the EC will present plans for a possible vaccination passport this month, with an eye to potentially opening up more travel for Europeans in the summer months.

A tweet from EC President Ursula von der Leyen on March 1 said: “We’ll present this month a legislative proposal for a Digital Green Pass. The aim is to provide: Proof that a person has been vaccinated; Results of tests for those who couldn’t get a vaccine yet; Info on COVID-19 recovery. It will respect data protection, security and privacy.”

On Feb. 26, as reported on Travelweek.ca, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is no longer ruling out vaccination passports for Canadians, from the sounds of his comments at a recent COVID-19 briefing.

 

 

A reporter had asked Trudeau about the federal government’s position on vaccination passports. Quebec’s Health Minister had indicated that he was in favour, and countries including Denmark, Sweden and Iceland are already onboard. The UK government has also indicated that it will not rule out vaccination passports.

While in January 2021 Trudeau said he was opposed to the concept, at his Feb. 26 briefing he said: “Our position is always going to be to rely on the best advice of experts.”

While there are potential pitfalls for vaccination passports, several travel agents Travelweek spoke to are largely in favour of anything, including vaccination passports, that can help jumpstart travel after almost a year of pandemic restrictions.

Meanwhile the IATA Travel Pass app is in its final stages and could go live this month.

Kathryn Folliott