Ontario Premier Doug Ford has officially announced a vaccine passport system for Ontario, making it the fourth province in Canada to do so. Ford made the announcement today at 1:00 p.m. alongside Health Minister Christine Elliott and Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore.
The proof of vaccination system is set to be introduced in two steps beginning Sept. 22 and is expected to be fully implemented by October 22.
Beginning September 22, proof of vaccination will be required for entry to all restaurants, bars, gyms, casinos and any other indoor settings where masks cannot be worn for the duration of the visit.
For the first month after the system is introduced, proof of vaccination will consist of the receipt issued when getting vaccinated, alongside another piece of government ID such as a driver’s licence.
The second step will involve the introduction of a mobile app where both the vaccine receipt and government ID details will be uploaded. The app is expected to be ready by October 22.
Enforcement of the vaccine passport system will be led by "reasonable" bylaw officers, says Ford.
The announcement comes after Doug Ford previously promised that Ontario would not implement a mandatory vaccine passport system. In July, Ford was asked by reporters whether his government would implement a proof of vaccination system in Ontario. He replied: "no, we aren't doing it, simple as that... the answer is no, we aren't going to do it, we aren't going to have a split society."
Ontario's Solicitor General Sylvia Jones made a similar statement in July, assuring Ontarians that the province would not be introducing a vaccine passport for its residents.
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