New legislation would ban use of ‘vaccine passports’ in Illinois

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FILE – In this undated photo, provided by NY Governor’s Press Office on Saturday March 27, 2021, is the new “Excelsior Pass” app, a digital pass that people can download to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. Vaccine passports being developed to verify COVID-19 immunization status and allow inoculated people to more freely travel, shop and dine have become the latest flash point in America’s perpetual political wars, with Republicans portraying them as a heavy-handed intrusion into personal freedom and private health choices. (NY Governor’s Press Office via AP, File)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rep. Andrew Chesney (R-Freeport) introduced legislation this week which would ban vaccine passports for Illinois residents.

House Bill 4081 was filed on Thursday and creates the Vaccine Credential Act, which “provides that a unit of local government or the State may not require a person to have a vaccine credential or show a vaccine credential before the person enters a public event or public venue.”

“Vaccine passports should not be a requirement for Illinoisans,” said Chesney. “This would not only be an infringement on the liberties and freedom of Illinoisans, but also a violation of our constituents’ medical privacy. To envision a society where we restrict the rights of some by the nature of medical treatments they have received or not received is not only discriminatory, but dystopian.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo introduced the first vaccine passport, which required residents of that state to prove their vaccination status in order to gain entry into events and businesses.

Ninteen states have banned or restricted the use of vaccine passports, including Texas, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Iowa, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

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