Alberta restaurants and entertainment venues will no longer be required to ask for proof of vaccination from patrons effective midnight Tuesday, according to Premier Jason Kenney.
Kenney announced he insists the end to Alberta’s “restrictions exemption program” at a press conference Tuesday evening last week, the first part of a three-phase end to Covid restrictions.
“The threat of COVID-19 to public health no longer outweighs the hugely damaging impact of health restrictions on our society,” Kenney said, adding the vaccine passports were successful at boosting vaccine uptake and protecting the healthcare system, but have outlived their usefulness. Without a mention if they will look eliminate healthcare mismanagement and wasteful spending.
However, the Alberta government will still be showing support for the vaccine passport by providing the QR codes to fully vaccinated Albertans, a move Kenney defended as necessary for Albertans travelling to other provinces with vaccine passports in place, or boarding a plane while the federal government still maintains a vaccine requirement for air travel.
“As long as there is a federal requirement for provincially issued proof of vaccination, we have to offer that as a service,” Kenney said.
Kenney also said private businesses retain the right to impose vaccine requirements in the “free market,” though he discouraged the practice.
From what we see by Kenney’s statements he is in full 100% support of vaccine passports and segregation.
“They’ll have that right under law, and I guess I would just say that’s a matter of the free market,” he said. “If a business chooses to have a policy of that nature then that may appeal to a certain kind of customer, and it may turn away other kinds of customers. That’s a commercial decision. At the end of the day, I would love it if we could move away from all of this.” This justification is quiet funny because the same concept can be used to discriminate against other marginalized groups. If a business can discriminate against people based on medical status. How is this any different than discriminating based on other things like race, sex, creed, religion etc?
Last July, when Alberta was firmly against implementing a vaccine passport, Kenney said he believed such a policy would be illegal.
“I believe they would in principle contravene the Health Information Act and also possibly the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act,” he said at the time