OWN assessment by Government warns that ‘Plan B’ vaccine passports could backfire and fuel Covid flood by causing people to go to smaller pubs that have fewer safeguards following the ‘unmitigated catastrophe’ rollout in Scotland

  • Under the Government’s Covid-19 “Plan B”, vaccine passports will be introduced
  • To gain entry to certain venues, it would be necessary to have double-jabbed status
  • This could result in people moving to smaller venues, according to the government’s impact assessment
  • People could be pushed to small pubs with poor ventilation, which could fuel a spike in cases. 

The introduction of vaccine passports could lead to a rise in coronavirus cases, as people will be more likely to gather in smaller venues with poor ventilation than in larger ones. This is according the Government’s own impact assessment.  

Boris Johnson’s coronavirus, ‘Plan B’, would require people to prove that they are double-jabbed in order to be granted access to certain hospitality and entertainment settings. 

However, a document that looked at the economic and socio-economic impact of the policy suggested that it could backfire. 

The document was written by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. It expressed concern that people could avoid large venues and instead meet elsewhere to avoid showing documentation. 

The Telegraph obtained the impact assessment and warned that to roll out the policy in England, firms would need to hire thousands more stewards to verify vaccine status. 

It concluded that this could prove difficult to deliver and that the checks could cause ‘bottlenecks’ at large venues or stadiums.     

The document reportedly warned the policy could cost firms £2billion in lost turnover if it was in place over a six month period. 

Already, vaccine passports have been implemented in Scotland. Hospitality chiefs have called their introduction an ‘unmitigated catastrophe’. 

Boris Johnson's coronavirus 'Plan B' would see people having to prove they are double-jabbed to gain access to certain hospitality, entertainment and sporting settings

Boris Johnson’s coronavirus, ‘Plan B’, would require people to prove that they are double-jabbed in order to be granted access to certain hospitality and entertainment settings.

But a Government document examining the economic and social impact of the policy suggested that it could backfire

A Government document that examined the economic and social effects of the policy suggested it could backfire.

The Government’s Plan B’ would see vaccine cards introduced in certain settings for those aged 18 and over. 

The policy would address situations in which crowds mix and come in close contact. 

This would include all nightclubs, bars, and other venues that are open after 1am and offer alcohol, music, and dancing. 

Indoor events with more than 500 people mixing – such as concert halls or large receptions – would be included alongside outdoor, crowded settings with at least 4,000 people. 

Any setting that has more than 10,000 people would be included, such as sports stadiums. 

The impact assessment by the Government looked at the potential displacement effects of the policy.         

It states: ‘A core concern is that certification could displace activity and business away from music venues to, say, pubs with music and late alcohol licences, etc, which could be counter-intuitive and potentially counter-productive.’

It states that people could be forced to go to smaller venues, which could lead to them going to unstructured and poorly ventilated bars instead, where they can access more alcohol than in the stadia. 

The document stated that evidence from the Euros soccer tournament earlier this year had shown that Covid cases connected to pubs increased even while England was playing abroad.  

For entry to large events or nightclubs in Scotland, proof of vaccination is required.  

According to the Scottish Hospitality Group (SHG), staff were subjected to ‘intolerable levels’ of abuse. Some venues also saw a drop of up 40 percent in footfall in the first week. 

It has asked the Scottish Government for an end to the scheme, which was legally binding since October 18. 

Despite calls from health chiefs for action to stop coronavirus cases rising, ministers in England have stated that they do not plan to trigger Plan B immediately. 

A DCMS spokesperson said that there was no evidence that lower attendance at certification events has had an impact on businesses. However, several venues have used this method of entry throughout the year.

“Plan B” is the Autumn and Winter Plan as published. This document does not reflect government policy.