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Covid-19 ‘health pass’ for social events given green light by French lawmakers on second attempt

Covid-19 ‘health pass’ for social events given green light by French lawmakers on second attempt
The French National Assembly has approved a bill that includes the implementation of a Covid-19 ‘health pass’ that will allow people to attend sports fixtures, festivals, and other such occasions that draw large crowds.

After being defeated in its first attempt on Tuesday evening, President Emmanuel Macron’s ruling party was able to push through the introduction of its pass on Wednesday morning as the government looks to reopen the economy. 

It will come into effect on June 9, providing proof that someone has been vaccinated, has had a negative test, or has recently recovered from the virus and therefore has antibodies.

Macron has said the pass won’t be required in everyday public places such as restaurants and bars, but will allow people to safely attend sporting events, music festivals and theme parks. 

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The bill was passed after Macron’s government agreed to shorten the transition period during which it will be able to re-impose Covid restrictions after France’s state of emergency is lifted on June 2.

Cafes, restaurants, and bars will be allowed to reopen for outdoor service from May 19, with shops, museums, and cinemas also opening for business once again. Places of worship and sports stadiums will be able to admit up to 5,000 people from early June, and foreign tourists will be allowed to visit France.

The move to relax the country’s third lockdown comes despite stubbornly high levels of Covid-19 and a stuttering vaccination campaign. The French health authorities have registered more than 20,000 new cases a day for more than two months, although it is clear that infection levels are falling.

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