The British Columbia government has announced the launching of a new “Vaccine Pass” for citizens to access an array of social activities from Sept. 13.
Manitoba was the first province requesting its citizens proof of vaccination through a QR code for a variety of events on Aug. 5. Quebec will launch its own “vaccine pass” on Sept. 1.
Now British Columbia is set to become the third province to request citizens a vaccine pass for a number of non-essential services.
The province is not willing to exempt any citizen from this requirement. When asked about the topic, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said it straightforwardly “the short answer is no.”
“If there are those rare people who have a medical reason why they can’t be immunized (…) they will not be able to attend those events through this period of time of high risk.”
Initially, one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will be enough but by Oct. 24, two doses will be required. Premier John Horgan and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry told reporters on Monday.
“Vaccines are our ticket to putting this pandemic behind us,” Premier John Horgan said.
“So I call on all eligible unvaccinated British Columbians to roll up their sleeves to stop the spread, and help protect themselves, their loved ones and the people in their community,” he added.
On Sept. 13 only vaccine pass holders will be able to unlock access to concerts, sport events, theaters, restaurants, nightclubs, casinos, fitness classes, weddings, parties, conferences, meetings, workshops and similar.
The local government has announced this pass will not be necessary to access places of worship, grocery stores and other retail settings as long as the area has not experienced high levels of COVID-19 transmission
The digital vaccine pass will also have a “secure alternative option” for those who do not have access to a digital version.
The Canadian border will reopen for fully vaccinated international travelers on Sept. 7. It is highly possible that bearing the vaccine pass will also be mandatory for all of them too.
As of Friday, 24,944,393 Canadians are fully vaccinated. And 74% of eligible British Columbians 12 and older had received the full series of a vaccine.