Trudeau said he will leave the domestic vaccine passport to the provinces
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stated that the federal government will work with the provinces to ensure that international travel has an “internationally recognized certificate of vaccination,” but that the domestic option is left to the provincial governments.
Trudeau’s comments were made after some provinces, such as Quebec with Manitoba, Has announced plans for an internal vaccine passport.Other provinces, such as Alberta with Saskatchewan, Has said that they will not have such a requirement.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Trudeau was asked whether the federal government should play a role in helping standardize provincial projects, but he said that his government is focusing on international vaccine passports.
Trudeau said: “Different provinces will do different things, the federal government can play a role, and we are looking for vaccine certification for international travel.”
Any attempt to introduce a domestic vaccine passport may be resisted by some provinces.
In a media interview on Monday, Alberta Governor Jason Kenney replied “yes” when asked if his government would postpone the passport program if the federal government tried to introduce it.
Trudeau said last month that his government is working on an international vaccine passport program, but the idea has been put forward Concerns about privacy.
In May of this year, Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial privacy commissioners issued a joint statement warning that although vaccine passports “may provide substantial public benefits, they are an infringement of civil liberties and can only be adopted after careful consideration”.
Concerns about mixed doses
In June, the National Advisory Committee on Immunization updated its guidelines to allow alternate use of AstraZeneca-Oxford, Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines in some cases.
Trudeau was asked whether the government has guaranteed that if Canadians are vaccinated with two different vaccines, they will be allowed to travel, even if other countries have not approved a mixed dose.
He said: “We will work with the international community to ensure that people who are fully vaccinated in a way that Canadians believe are safe and effective are also recognized by the world.”
Trudeau also said that some Canadians living abroad have been vaccinated with vaccines that Canada has not yet approved. He said the government is studying vaccines certified by the World Health Organization to determine which vaccines are eligible for vaccine passports.
The government has begun to relax some travel restrictions on fully vaccinated Canadians and permanent residents.
As of last week, people vaccinated with two doses can enter Canada without quarantine.