Mandatory vaccine passports to be introduced to Northern Ireland

Stormont ministers have voted in favour of mandatory Covid vaccine passports being introduced in NI from next month.

Wednesday, 17th November 2021, 4:12 pm

The vote has just been held at Stormont - and it is understood DUP ministers voted against the move.

Sinn Féin, Alliance and the SDLP all backed the proposals from Health Minister Robin Swann.

But it is understood DUP ministers voted against the move, with the result finishing six to four.

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Later this evening the Department of Health will bring forward another paper to explore the plans in more detail.

It is understood the plan tabled by Mr Swann is for the rules on Covid passports to take effect on 29 November.

However there would be a 14-day grace period before fixed penalty notices could be issued.

The minister is believed to have proposed applying the measure across the hospitality sector and entry to large events.

Health Minister Robin Swann

And it is understood the measure will apply for access to: nightclubs; hospitality venues which serve food and drink; cinemas, theatres, concert halls and conference centres; indoor events with 500 or more attendees with some or all of the audience not normally seated; outdoor events with 4,000 or more attendees with some or all of the audience not normally seated; and events where more than 10,000 people will be present regardless of whether they are seated.

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