Why immunity passports are a bad idea

People shouldn’t be branded with a status if they’re vaccinated or not

(Kristen Frier)

2020 has ended, and the new year has offered relief from the COVID pandemic in the form of a vaccine. While this has been seen as the beginning of the end of the pandemic for some, a good portion of us know we aren’t out of this situation just yet.

In order to better track the vaccinated from the unvaccinated, there has been talk of giving vaccine recipients ways to prove they have been vaccinated, like a document. I think this idea seems like profiling, and I believe there are other ways in which it can be more covert.

I understand the sentiment behind this idea. By having visual identifiers, like a vaccination card, authorities can better track who has been given the shot from those who haven’t. Once the vaccine is distributed and widely available, the transition back into normalcy can commence.

One of the steps to hurry this process is to have designated areas for vaccinated people to ensure that the economy makes a swift recovery. More social gatherings can take place among vaccinated people, and morale can slowly build back up.

While the idea of a vaccine ID card has some noble intentions, it is also problematic.

Being forced to have a vaccine ID card is straight out of a dystopian future. Even the concept of allowing vaccinated people into specially designated areas seems like the epitome of profiling. Not to mention the implied sense of favouritism if this were to go forward.

Vaccinated people getting to enjoy themselves in parties, as well as shopping in compacted, designated areas, has an oppressive aura around it.

I am not anti-vax, I fully support vaccines and the eventual curing of COVID-19, but not everyone shares my way of thinking. Some people aren’t anti-vax as well, and yet they are hesitant about getting the vaccine.

There is no guarantee that the vaccine is 100 per cent effective. The possibility of the virus mutating into deadlier variants is still possible, so I can understand how some people don’t want to get vaccinated just yet.

Imagine it’s now March. The vaccine has started to be mass-produced and distributed. You haven’t got your shot yet because you’re still cautious or are waiting for it to be distributed. But, because some areas like private businesses are only open for those in possession of a “vaccine passport,” you aren’t able to visit these areas for fear of spreading the virus to others.

While the vaccinated may be immune or resistant to infection, it is still unclear whether they can still spread it to unvaccinated people.

However, that’s no reason to brand the vaccinated with a literal ID card to show their status and allow them in specified locations. Performing this action through more covert means, like analyzing the individual’s records to determine their status, could be a better method that does not make people feel more isolated or divided than they already are.