Domestic vaccine passports are a counterproductive, illiberal gimmick – Alistair Carmichael

Writing for Politics Home, Lib Dem MP Alistair Carmichael explains the party’s opposition to vaccine passports:

An ID card scheme, we are told, is necessary to improve vaccine uptake. In fact, the limited amount of research that has been carried out suggests that using vaccine ID cards for domestic purposes makes people less trusting of vaccines – a counterproductive step if ever there was one. Instead, we risk pushing already marginalised groups even further away from community engagement.

Until everyone that can be vaccinated has been vaccinated, vaccine ID cards will be divisive and exclusive. Once everyone is vaccinated, of course, then the need to demonstrate this to gain access to clubs, football matches or concerts becomes unnecessary…

Remember that, overwhelmingly, those who will be required to administer this pointless scheme are opposed to it. Those who run pubs, clubs and large events will be at the sharp end of this government mandate. Having worked in the hospitality industry myself for years in my youth I do not envy them their task.

Aside from the practical concerns there are the principles behind such a plan. The really dangerous bit of any centralised ID scheme is the database that sits beneath the surface.

You can read the full piece here.

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3 responses to “Domestic vaccine passports are a counterproductive, illiberal gimmick – Alistair Carmichael”

  1. Sometimes I despair of this party, common sense seems to go out of the window.
    Being Liberal means that we rate people as the most important factor, we want them safe and to have the best possible future. This policy does not represent that.

  2. I am asked to comply with a lot of “illiberal” regulations to live my daily life. I need a licence to drive my car, am required to pay council taxes for various services that I may or may not need, pay taxes which benefit other people et al. I comply with all all these illiberalities (if that’s a word) because I know we have a better society with them rather than without them. Covid-19 is a pernicious respiratory disease spread by transmission of the virus through the air from person to person and the risk of picking up the virus increases with the number of unvaccinated people in any group particularly if they are all in a crowded poorly ventilated environment such as a night club. In order to reduce the risk of person to person transmission of the virus I am prepared to go along with a system of vaccination passports even though it limits the personal freedom of a small number of people. Covid-19 does not make any distinction between the good, the bad or the ugly it’s an equal opportunity disease. As for the problem of an underlying database, that ship sailed long ago. If as a party we want to get into a position of power where have real influence on the future direction of the country we need to concentrate on the real issues facing the UK, decent affordable secure housing, an education system fit for the 21st century, good secure jobs for all, a rational voting system and most urgent of all mitigation of the effects of climate change

  3. We have vaccine passports in France, most people seem to be o.k. with that.
    The u.k. Government has various ways of finding out who you are and where
    you are. Strange that they don’t seem to know who came in and who went out
    of the country. Perhaps they do know and just don’t want to tell the voters.

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