What you need to know about New York City’s new vaccine guide | World Weekly
The broader plan also includes vaccine incentives such as $100 discount cards. “The goal here is to convince everyone that this is the right time,” de Blasio said.
How will it work: To watch a Broadway show, eat indoors at a restaurant, or use the gym, you will need to prove that you have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. (Necessaries, like grocery shopping, won’t be needed.) The accepted guide will include the state’s Excelsior Pass (which has faced a host of equity loopholes and concerns), as well as a new app released by the city, NYC Covid Safe. A paper card issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will also work. The requirement applies to both customers and employees of those premises.
Some details are still choppy. For example, it is unclear how the plan will work for children under 12, who are not yet eligible for vaccination. (De Blasio said more information will be announced in mid-August.) It’s also unclear how site operators and workers will handle the burden of checking everyone out. The NYC Hospitality Alliance said in a statement that the new requirement would be a “very difficult and controversial step for some.” For other companies, it would be a welcome way to enforce policies that were previously voluntary.
Application for it: The NYC Covid Safe app offers fewer features than the state app and does not connect directly to vaccine records. Instead, it simply stores an image of the vaccine history. This makes it an easier tool for people whose vaccine history is stored out of state, since US vaccine databases are not centralized nationwide. But Albert Fox, who studies vaccine passports as executive director of the Surveillance Technology Surveillance Project, points out some flaws. Since the city app only stores an image, it will be pretty much anything accepted as proof of the vaccine, making it remarkably easy to falsify credentials. “It’s baffling to me that they would go to such lengths to fundamentally reinvent the camera,” Kahn says.
S.Mitra Kalita, who founded the covid resource Epicenter-NYC, says that while policies may be necessary to combat the delta variant, the new technology should not detract from the larger goal of helping more people get vaccinated. “We still run into people who don’t know vaccines are free,” she says. “Application is one thing. We need more [other] things now.”
bigger picture: The United States has faced a difficult road when it comes to vaccine applications and mandates. Many countries have banned proof requirements altogether. But there is a sharp split – San Francisco now has an alliance of hundreds of bars that require some of that proof. More and more employers have started ordering vaccines in recent days, including companies as diverse as Disney, Google and Tyson.
Other countries, such as France and Italy, faced a backlash over the latter’s states. The UK was discussing such a move. Israel canceled its “Green Corridor” and then re-launched it. (The Ada Lovelace Institute has a good list.)