England and Scotland’s approaches to the vaccine passport for nightclubs couldn’t be much different, could it? In Boris Johnson’s England, he announced the plan on July 19th at a press conference on the TV. At the time of publishing this article, not much else has been said and the government’s own website is giving little away.
Indeed, rumours persist that Johnson is considering scrapping the idea entirely. Compare this with the approach in Nicola Sturgeon’s Scotland. She announced the plan on September 1st in Parliament – just ten days ago. Yesterday, the Scottish Parliament voted in favour of the scheme, and it’ll be due to officially begin on October 1st.
Yet the more I read about what’ll be happening in Scotland in a few weeks time, the more I think this has been rushed and is just going to lead to more trouble later on.
For starters, the Scottish government put a paper up on Wednesday – the day before the vote – which admitted they had no official definition of the word “nightclub”. And seeing they are covered by this legislation, there’s now a rather pressing need for some civil servants in Edinburgh to cobble together a definition as quickly as possible. Given they explain the difficulty in doing so is that nightclub activity transcends with other areas of hospitality, lots of luck to the poor mites who have to work that out!
Elsewhere, there’s a more telling bit that says “employees at venues within scope of the scheme” will be exempt. In other words, the clubbers going to events will have to be double vaccinated – but the people who work at the club will not need to be vaccinated at all. Whilst I understand this exemption is to do with uncertainty in the law over whether you can force employees to be jabbed, it does create an extremely odd situation.
It also means that anti-vaxxer DJs won’t need to worry about being refused entry into Scottish nightclubs – but it does also mean the aforementioned anti-vaxxer DJs will be performing to fully vaccinated crowds. Weird times…