Forum: mandatory COVID-19 vaccine pass is discriminatory

Union confederation Forum is against making COVID-19 vaccine certificate mandatory to visit various establishments

The Forum of trade unions is against the rules coming into force on Monday that require a valid vaccination certificate to visit various establishments, insisting the vaccine should not be mandatory.

This is in direct contrast to the Medical Association of Malta, which told MaltaToday that the rules were responsible and were required in the short term. 

Forum President Paul Pace said that it was discriminatory to the Maltese, as foreigners would still be allowed to travel to Malta without the booster dose.

As of 17 January, bars, snack bars, gyms, pools and spas, band clubs, cinemas, theatres and sporting events will only be accessible to people with a valid vaccine certificate.

“Are tourists not going to go to restaurants and establishments while they are in Malta? Or will they be allowed in with two doses? This is clearly discriminatory against the Maltese,” the trade union grouping said.

Forum added that it disagreed with the removal of social distancing from bars. Earlier today, Health Minister Chris Fearne announced that bars and restaurants could return to pre-pandemic levels of social distancing from Monday.

READ ALSO: Grech’s U-turn on vaccine passes finds strong support on Facebook

“It doesn’t make sense because people who have had the booster can still get COVID-19, so it will still be a breeding ground for the virus,” the Forum said. It added that this would cause more people to have to resort to quarantine than the already higher numbers currently affecting businesses.  

Forum, however, welcomed the removal of masks in the street for persons in groups of not more than two.

READ ALSO: Masks no longer mandatory for those with a booster dose from Monday

Correction: A previous version of this article wrongly attributed the comments Paul Pace made on behalf of Forum to nurses' union MUMN. MUMN is, however, a member of Forum.