FL Governor DeSantis Officially Bans ‘Vaccine Passports’

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cinderella castle

Credit: Disney

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has issued an executive order officially banning passports in the state. The Governor had previously stated he would take such an action and followed through today.

Credit: State of Florida Office of the Governor

As reported by The Guardian,

The order says the prohibition is therefore “necessary to protect the fundamental rights and privacies of Floridians and the free flow of commerce within the state”.

It also says “no Florida government entity” or its officials “shall be permitted to issue vaccine passports, vaccine passes, or other standardized documentation for the purpose of certifying an individual’s Covid-19 vaccination status to a third party, or otherwise publish or share and individual’s Covid-19 vaccination record or similar health information.”

Despite the order’s line about protecting the “free flow of commerce”, DeSantis’s order also says business are “prohibited from requiring patrons or customers to provide any documentation certifying Covid-19 vaccination or post-transmission recovery to gain access to, entry upon, or service from the business”.

Related: Universal Studios Hollywood Joins Disneyland, Dropping Mask Mandate

DeSantis also took to Twitter to announce his order.

Today I issued an executive order prohibiting the use of so-called COVID-19 vaccine passports. The Legislature is working on making permanent these protections for Floridians and I look forward to signing them into law soon. Read my EO here – bit.ly/3dxuipJ

Last month, President Biden’s administration announced that it would support several companies in developing what they called a “vaccine passport.” The passport would be either a digital or paper item to ensure that the holder has been vaccinated against COVID-19. As reported by U.S. News & World Report:

President Joe Biden in January issued an executive order directing agencies to assess the feasibility of linking coronavirus vaccinations to vaccine cards, also known as “international certificates of vaccination or prophylaxis,” and producing a digital version.

United States passport
Credit: U.S. Embassy

Governor DeSantis was immediately outspoken in his opposition to the passport idea. He gave a press conference that was reported by Orlando WESH 2 and said:

“We are not supporting doing any vaccine passports in the state of Florida,” DeSantis said. “It’s completely unacceptable for either the government or the private sector to impose upon you the requirement that you show proof of vaccine to just simply be able to participate in normal society.”

Disney has not stated whether it would support the idea of a Covid-19 vaccine passport. Remember, though, that The Walt Disney Company has created its rules and regulations for Guests who wish to visit their theme parks. For example, although the Florida governor has not enacted a statewide face mask requirement and has previously stated that theme parks in the state can operate as normal, Walt Disney World Resort in Central Florida has continued to operate under pandemic-era guidelines as recommended by the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Related: Universal Reverses Course on COVID Testing and Vaccination Policy

Still, Disney has not said that vaccine passports are going to be a requirement at Disney World or any of their properties, but given that other industries are beginning to implement them, it may not be out of the question for the Disney Parks and Resorts.

magic kingdom crowds
Credit: Inside the Magic Kelly C.

No other states have currently issued potential vaccine passport bans.

What do you think of Governor DeSantis’s vaccine passport ban? What is your opinion on vaccine passports? Let us know in the comments.

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