Covid passports are raised again to help keep pubs and restaurants open all winter
A program allowing punters to show their vaccination status in pubs and restaurants should be reviewed, it was reported.
Boris Johnson warned on Monday that the UK was facing a ‘rough’ winter and that it would not rule out further Covid restrictions if an unexpected ‘horror’ emerged.
A postponement of the final easing of restrictions was recently confirmed and will now likely not take place until July 19.
Earlier plans for a ‘Covid passport’ to be used by punters were scrapped after the government turned away from hospitality venues and turned more to travel and big events.
Now reports indicate that the so-called “Covid certification” plan could be on the table again.
The Daily Mail reports that a review of the program, led by Michael Gove, is examining whether they could be used to allow places like pubs, restaurants and theaters to stay open even if cases increase later this year.
It would be used through a new feature on the NHS app allowing people in England to demonstrate their vaccination status.
A source from Whitehall told the newspaper that the program could be used to keep a much wider range of sites open if a wave of viruses hits this winter.
The source said: “Part of the reason we are testing Covid certification this summer is to open mass events more safely with larger crowds, but also in part to get people used to the idea.
“We hope that with high vaccination rates we will be in a very different position this winter. But if we find ourselves in dire straits, certification could be a tool in our arsenal to keep things open that might otherwise need to be. to close. “
Dozens of Tory MPs have reportedly warned that they will vote against the use of Covid passports in pubs, but ministers believe opposition could subside if the alternative were to shut down parts of the economy.
It was reported that ministers were discussing the potential of Covid passports for the first time in February, weeks after England was plunged into a third lockdown.
The plans sparked a furious backlash from Tory MPs and the hospitality industry, who said they would place another “burden” on already struggling sites.
A review found that Covid passports would have “significant implications” for pubs and “this will be further considered in consultation with industry.”
The plans appeared to be scrapped as the Prime Minister indicated he was moving away from the idea of passports for pubs, saying they would be “only” for industries which “have proven very difficult to open the year. last “- like discos and big events.