Breach of privacy: UK church leaders protest against vaccine passport

WION Web Team
London, United Kingdom Published: Apr 18, 2021, 08:47 PM(IST)

Covid vaccine (file photo) Photograph:( Reuters )

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The leaders have emphasised that as Christian leaders they cannot close their doors on somebody if they do not have a vaccine passport or certificate

A group of UK church leaders have come together to urge the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, not to adopt the policy of vaccine passports.

More than 1,250 clergies from different Christian groups signed an open letter to Johnson claiming the "introduction of vaccine passports would constitute an unethical form of coercion and violation of the principle of informed consent."

The signatories believe that vaccines should not be the deciding factor of whether or not someone will be allowed to enter a venue or participate in an activity.

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"If the vaccines are highly effective in preventing significant disease, as seems to be the evidence from trial results to date, then those who have been vaccinated have already received protection; there is no benefit to them of other people being vaccinated," the letter reads.

They also believe that the introduction of vaccine passports will be a violation of the principle of informed consent. The leaders feel this can create a "two-tier society" which can lead to an 'underclass' of people being excluded from various areas of public life.

"There is also a legitimate fear that this scheme would be the thin end of the wedge leading to a permanent state of affairs in which COVID vaccine status could be expanded to encompass other forms of medical treatment and perhaps even other criteria beyond that," the letter reads. "This scheme has the potential to bring about the end of liberal democracy as we know it and to create a surveillance state in which the government uses technology to control certain aspects of citizens' lives."

More importantly, the leaders have emphasised that as Christian leaders they cannot close their doors on somebody if they do not have a vaccine passport or certificate. "For the Church of Jesus Christ to shut out those deemed by the state to be social undesirables would be anathema to us and a denial of the truth of the Gospel," they believe.

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