Britain's equality watchdogs fear that what seems like the inevitable introduction of vaccine passports will only lead to discrimination and injustices.
As of next week, British travellers who can prove they have received full immunity to the COVID-19 virus via jabs or provide proof of negative test within 72 hours before travelling will be able to bypass the mandatory quarantine upon arrival.
Greece has also lifted its travel restrictions by allowing vaccinated Brits and those seeking a little bit of sun that can provide a negative result to enter the country, making way for holiday vacationing to take place once more.
Vaccine passports to create 'two-tier society'?
However, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has voiced its concern that introducing COVID vaccine passports would be unlawful as it would create what they are calling a 'two-tier society' by discriminating against migrants, ethic minorities and those over a lower socio-economic status.
They told the Cabinet Office that although some benefits could very clearly arise from such a scheme, the injustices of excluding certain groups of people from everyday life far outweigh the benefits:
There is a risk of unlawful discrimination if decisions taken in this process disadvantage people with protected characteristics who have not received, or are not able to receive, the vaccine, unless they can be shown to be justified.
Any mandatory requirement for vaccination or the implementation of Covid-status certification may amount to indirect discrimination, unless the requirement can be objectively justified.
Vaccine passports to have access to the Tube?
After PM Boris Johnson backed up the use of vaccine passports saying that it would be one of the best ways to facilitate the public to be able to re-enter pubs, theatres and stadiums, recent polling has found that a considerable majority of Britons are also in favour of them.
They are especially in support of vaccine passports for foreign holidays but the EHRC fears they might even start being used in every sphere of social life, such as: to have access to public transport, shops, pubs and restaurants. They said:
Covid-status certificates' being considered by ministers to help open up society, get people back into work or away on holiday despite concerns from Boris Johnson's own MPs that they will be 'intrusive, costly and unnecessary.