Not much has caused the amount of controversy in recent times as COVID-19 vaccine cards. Some people view them as governments abusing their power; others believe they’re a necessary component of a return to a non-pandemic society. There have been plenty of confrontations over the cards recently, and British Columbia (BC), Canada, now has to prepare to deal with them. An announcement by the provincial government this week asserts that, come next month, COVID-19 vaccine cards will be mandatory for many activities, including casino visits.
COVID-19 Vaccine Cards Required in BC
The BC government has announced that it will require proof of the COVID-19 vaccine starting September 13. This will be achieved through the presentation of a vaccine card, which will have to be shown by anyone visiting a casino, restaurant, sports event, concert, nightclub or fitness class – not included are grocery stores and places of worship. At the onset of the mandate, BC residents will have to show that they have received at least one of the two COVID-19 vaccine shots but, by October 24, they will need to show proof that two doses have been administered.
BC Premier John Horgan and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry made the announcement yesterday, but didn’t provide details on how the requirement will be enforced. If the province’s businesses are to be responsible for verifying the status of someone’s vaccination, it’s likely that many establishments will turn a blind eye, at least until they get caught. On the other hand, if a facility attempts to stop someone from entering the premises without showing the card, it’s easy to imagine a scenario that develops into a physical confrontation. Neither situation has a peaceful outcome.
BC Slows Post-COVID-19 Recovery
According to Henry, around 90% of the current COVID-19 cases are registered among non-vaccinated individuals and, out of that amount, 93% are sent to the hospital. She added that those who don’t receive the coronavirus vaccine are ten times more likely to become infected. “These numbers are a stark reminder of why vaccines are important,” asserted the health official.
Because BC is still dealing with ongoing COVID-19 issues and the number of positive cases is rising, the province has had to rethink its post-COVID-19 recovery strategy. There was the possibility that it would ease restrictions further as of September 7; however, that is no longer going to happen. According to yesterday’s announcement, the current health restrictions will remain in place and additional restrictions could be coming.
For now, the vaccine card will be required for everyone 12 years old or older, and no exemptions will be given over health or religious arguments. Visitors to the province from elsewhere will also have to show proof of vaccination. For now, the new mandate will be in place until at least January 31 of next year.