Welsh Liberal Democrats call on Mark Drakeford to rule out ‘illiberal’ vaccine passports in Wales
The Welsh Liberal Democrats have continued their calls for the Welsh Government to rule out “illiberal and unworkable” vaccine passports.
In England, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said that nightclubs and other large venues will be legally required to bar customers without passports from September. He has not confirmed or denied that they may be brought in for visiting pubs.
Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford however has so far only said that it will a matter for individual businesses in Wales to decide whether they will require people to show so-called vaccine passports. Nightclubs are yet to re-open in Wales.
The Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds MS said her party remained opposed to any form of passport or certificate for accessing services or venues.
“The introduction of these would not only be divisive and discriminatory but unworkable and illiberal,” she said.
“If we truly want to keep people safe, then we must ensure that we have a strong test and trace system to protect vulnerable people – but a national ID system for vaccines does not help with this.”
‘On the table’
Jane Dodds added that introducing these passports will leave many businesses “on their knees, facing reduced custom and struggling with the extra cost of enforcement”.
“I call on the Welsh Government and local councils to rule out introducing these burdensome vaccine passports here in Wales and focus instead of reducing the number of cases everywhere,” she said.
Rhun ap Iorwerth from Plaid Cymru has said that despite vaccine passports “running contrary” to his principles “you have to look at all sorts of models for allowing freedoms to be given back to people”.
“If it does make people think, as it probably does, that this would help them carry on with their lives, it has to be on the table,” he told BBC Politics Wales on Sunday.