Republican Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker admitted this week that he is considering implementing jab passports in his state.
In a new interview on Monday, Baker said that he wants to team up with other states to give people QR codes that will show that they have been dosed with an experimental shot against COVID-19.
“It’s a universal standard, and we’ve been working with a bunch of other states, there’s probably 15 or 20 of them, to try to create a single QR code that can be used for all sorts of things where people may choose to require a vaccine,” Baker said, going on to add that he already has a code for himself because “it’s my proof that I’ve been vaccinated.”
Baker went on to say that booster shots are so in “demand” that people have to schedule them a week or two in advance.
“Now, they may not be in the place somebody wants to go to get one,” he said. “And it may be a week or ten days out or two weeks out before they can get one. But given the fact that we have far more demand now that we had a couple of weeks ago, we’re going to see if we can increase our capacity to do more.”
Sen. Barry Finegold (D-Andover) first wrote to Baker seven months ago asking for jab passports. He feels that they are the best option to “standardize” and avoid confusion as cities reopen and people travel more.
“You go to different states and cities, and different places have different rules,” Finegold told The Boston Herald. “It would be so much easier if we had a vaccine passport we could flash and be done with it.”
It is unclear when jab passports would go into effect in Massachusetts and what exactly they would look like.
“The Baker-Polito Administration has been exploring a voluntary vaccine credential system to help residents more easily access their vaccine records and has been in touch with other states to learn more about their similar efforts,” said Baker administration Press Secretary Terry MacCormack, adding that the administration “has no plans for a statewide vaccine requirement.”
Boston Mayor Michelle Wu said on GBH last week that the city is considering imposing an indoor jab mandate for certain venues like restaurants and performance areas.
“We’re following the data very closely and thinking about every tool that the city of Boston has,” Wu said. “I still very much think that we should be taking all possible action to protect our community members, to protect customers.”
The opinions expressed by contributors and/or content partners are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Red Voice Media. Contact us for guidelines on submitting your own commentary. Red Voice Media would like to make a point of clarification on why we do not refer to any shot related to COVID-19 as a "vaccine." According to the CDC, the definition of a vaccine necessitates that said vaccine have a lasting effect of at least one year in preventing the contraction of the virus or disease it's intended to fight. Because all of the COVID-19 shots thus far available have barely offered six months of protection, and even then not absolute, Red Voice Media has made the decision hereafter to no longer refer to the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson substances as vaccinations.