State Rep. Reggie Stoltzfus (R-Paris Twp.) announces that he is cosponsoring legislation that will prohibit “vaccine passports.” The term has become known for entities requiring citizens to show proof of a COVID-19 vaccination in order to be allowed entry into an area or establishment.
“It’s interesting how the bar over a year ago was to flatten the curve of deaths and hospitalizations and to not overwhelm our healthcare system, but now, we’re seeing initiatives to require vaccines for citizens to be allowed into venues,” said Stoltzfus. “I have no problem at all with people choosing to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. However, after over a year of mandates from the government, as we come out of this pandemic, we cannot continue impeding on the rights and freedoms of Ohioans with any type of vaccine passport.”
Stoltzfus is referring to New York as the first state to announce a vaccine passport program called “Excelsior Pass,” which is going to use QR code technology to allow individuals into venues.
Additionally, Stoltzfus is a cosponsor of House Bill 248, also known as the Vaccine Choice & Anti-Discrimination Act. The legislation protects individuals who choose not to be vaccinated from discrimination due to their vaccine status. The representative notes that there may be many people who choose to decline the COVID-19 vaccine for religious or medical reasons and that those individuals should not face discriminatory actions.
The legislation prohibiting vaccine passports still awaits introduction while House Bill 248 is expected to receive its first committee hearing.