White House Rules Out Covid Passports, But Leaves Door Open for Federal Standards

By Paul Riegler on 8 April 2021
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The Biden administration has said it will not issue vaccine passports nor will it require U.S. citizens to carry one, but it is in discussions with U.S. airlines and other groups in the travel industry to provide them with technical guidance that could be used to bring about a return to international travel, multiple officials told Frequent Business Traveler.

The administration could set standards and guidelines, however, in order to ensure foreign airlines and governments, among other entities, that an entry in a vaccine passport is accurate.

The U.S. government, however, will not require such passports, despite the fact that the U.S. travel industry told the White House that it needs to  “develop uniform Federal principles for COVID-19 health credentials.”

The next steps, however, are far from clear, although the move comes as some universities in the United States as well as some foreign governments and cruise lines are requiring proof of Covid vaccination.

“The government is not now, nor will we be, supporting a system that requires Americans to carry a credential,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Tuesday. “There will be no federal vaccinations database and no federal mandate requiring everyone to obtain a single vaccination credential.”

The Biden administration does plan to make a statement on the matter, however.

Psaki told reporters Tuesday that the White House would provide guidance “that provides important answers to questions that Americans have, in particular around concerns about privacy, security, or discrimination, soon.”

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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