Ministers are currently discussing the possibility of limiting large events to vaccinated people from October, leaving those who haven’t had their jabs barred from attending Premier League matches.
Vaccine passports are soon to be mandatory for all large scale events
The plans are said to be in their final stages, withvaccine passports being mandatory for football fans as an incentive to keep residents going for vaccines in the run-up to Christmas.
Lower divisions, other sporting events such as the Autumn Rugby Internationals, and seated venues with a capacity of over 20,000 could also be subject to the same rule.
A government source revealed to PA: ‘It's important that fans can continue to watch sporting events over the autumn, which is why we're exploring the role vaccines might play in this.’
This will not only allow full capacity stadiums but has the added bonus of incentivising people of all ages to go and get their jab.
Vaccine certificates may also soon be required for non-seated events such as gigs and concerts over the threshold of 5,000 attendees. It is also unclear as yet whether a negative COVID test could be used in place of a vaccine passport, but the option has already been ruled out for nightclubs.
Shadow sports secretary Jo Stevens criticised the move, as vaccine passport policies will affect all 92 English football clubs:
To insist on vaccine passports less than a month before the start of the season will cause major disruptions, especially for clubs at the lower end of the pyramid.
Stevens also echoed Labour’s positing on the passports, labelling them discriminatory:
Labour has been clear that the use of COVID vaccination status alone will exclude those who can't be vaccinated or haven't had the jab because of delays. Being double jabbed doesn't prove you aren't carrying the virus. Testing for access to venues would be more efficient.
Vaccine passports will also be required for nightclubs from September
Vaccine passports won’t only be necessary for large events; Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced earlier this week that they would also be required to gain entry to nightclubs from late September. The move comes after fears that clubs could become ‘super spreaders’ of coronavirus and will be the first time the UK has demanded proof of vaccination to gain entry to a venue.
Until then, nightclubs are being urged to ask for proof of vaccination, a negative COVID test or immunity via antibodies before permitting entry. However, venues aren’t legally required to do so and a free to decide their entry requirements.
Johnson revealed at a press conference on Monday: ‘I don’t want to have to close nightclubs again as they have elsewhere. But it does mean nightclubs need to do the socially responsible thing.’
As we said last week, we do reserve the right to mandate certification at any point if it’s necessary to reduce transmission. And I should serve notice now that by the end of September, when all over 18s have had their chance to be double-jabbed, we’re planning to make full vaccination the condition of entry to nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather.