UK Music and figures in the industry have shown their support to the British government for vaccine passports if it allows a return for the live industry.
In an open letter to the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Labour leader Kier Starmer, and other MPs, the British organisation representing musicians – UK Music – has stated their approval of the proposed COVID vaccine passports. The potential scheme would provide people with proof once they had received vaccines that they would be able to use to visit certain places and attend certain events.
However, the institution and its backers haven’t expressed a blanket approval of the scheme. In their letter they outline that their understanding of the passport would allow for proof of either vaccinations, a negative COVID test, or an antibody test for access to venues. They also state that this must not solely be used for proof of vaccination – meaning that non-vaccinated persons couldn’t attend – and that it must be a temporary measure and not a long term solution.
They go on to state that their approval is reliant on a lack of discrimination via the passports, that privacy should be protected, and that the government needs a clear exit criteria. The music body outlined their guidance for re-launching the music industry back in January, and recently hoped that the easing of lockdown measures would lead to a potential return for the live industry this Summer.
At the moment, whilst restrictive measures in the UK are being slowly lifted there is no guarantee for music venues or events organisers. With no insurance in place to ensure that hosts and organisers won’t lose out in the event of tighter restrictions or even another lockdown later in the year, many are having to cancel future events already under the uncertainty.
COVID passports provide a potential solution to safely getting people back into venues, but at the moment there is no confirmation of the plan.