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Lib Dems slam vaccine passports as ‘illiberal’ after First Minister says they are under discussion

02 Apr 2021 2 minute read
Welsh Liberal Democrats leader Jane Dodds

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have slammed vaccine passports as “illiberal” after the First Minister said he was considering their implementation.

Speaking yesterday Mark Drakeford said that Wales had “independent powers” to implement the passports if there was no cross-UK consensus on the issue.

However, he warned that there were “many practical and ethical issues” to overcome before they could be brought in.

“I discussed this yesterday evening with Michael Gove, the minister in charge of the cabinet office, the First Minister of Scotland and ministers in Northern Ireland,” he said at the Welsh Government press conference.

“We continue to work together on the issue of vaccine certification. There are positive prizes to be won from having a successful vaccine certification scheme, but there are many practical and ethical issues that will need to be addressed and resolved successfully if those positive opportunities can be won from it.

“We do have independent powers in all four nations on this matter, but the fact that we are discussing it regularly together proves the opportunity for us all to address those complex issues in a way that reaches common solutions.”

But Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds, who is standing in mid-Wales in the Senedd election, responded to say that the passports would be “unworkable and illiberal”.

“We oppose the proposed introduction of divisive and discriminatory ‘vaccine passports’ which are both unworkable and illiberal,” she said.

“These plans could deny individuals access to pubs or restaurants, services or even jobs.

“As the party of civil liberties and personal freedoms we were proud to successfully oppose the previous attempt to introduce of ID cards to the UK and we oppose these vaccine passports.”

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