Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis rolled out an executive order on Friday aimed at curtailing the use of “vaccine passports,” or documentation to show proof of vaccination.
The order says government entities in Florida are prohibited from issuing “vaccine passports … or other standardized documentation for the purpose of certifying an individual’s COVID-19 vaccination status to a third party.”
“Today I issued an executive order prohibiting the use of so-called COVID-19 vaccine passports,” DeSantis, a Republican, said in a tweet. “The Legislature is working on making permanent these protections for Floridians and I look forward to signing them into law soon.”
In the order, DeSantis said that vaccination records are private information, “which should not be shared by mandate,” and that “vaccine passports reduce individual freedom and will harm patient privacy.”
Taking effect immediately, it also bans businesses from requiring customers to provide documentation verifying a Covid-19 vaccination or post-transmission recovery in order to gain access or service from the business.
The order comes after DeSantis announced on Monday that he would take steps to forbid “vaccine passports” and such documentation. That same day, more Floridians became eligible for vaccination.
“It’s completely unacceptable for either the government or the private sector to impose upon you the requirement that you show proof of vaccine to just simply participate in normal society,” he said.
As of this week, Florida has over 2 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus, with around 34,000 deaths, according to NBC News’ count. Meanwhile, Florida has administered more than 6 million vaccine doses, with 16.3 percent fully vaccinated in the state.