Thousands of young Britons celebrated "Freedom Day" by piling into nightclubs that had been closed for nearly a year-and-a-half, indulging in the kind of nightlife activities they once took for granted. Unfortunately for those who haven't been "fully vaccinated", the UK's vaccine's minister Nadhim Zahawi said Monday that a negative coronavirus test will "no longer be sufficient" proof that a person is COVID safe.
Zahawi said a negative coronavirus test would soon "no longer be sufficient" proof that a person was COVID-safe, and instead they urged nightclubs and other businesses to use the NHS COVID pass, which contains their vaccination status. Public health authorities will be monitoring to see how many businesses voluntarily follow this 'recommendation'. Over the next few weeks, "we will be keeping a close watch on how it is used by venues and reserve the right to mandate if necessary."
But pretty soon, providing proof of vaccination status might be a requirement in the UK, just like it's becoming a requirement in other parts of Europe like France and Greece.
"By the end of September everyone aged 18 and over will have the chance to receive full vaccination and the additional two weeks for that protection to really take hold."
"So at that point we plan to make full vaccination a condition of entry to nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather."
"Proof of a negative test will no longer be sufficient."
As we have reported, starting in August, members of the French public will need to carry around a special vaccine pass, according to an edict from President Emmanuel Macron.
Authorities hope barring un-vaccinated from places like nightclubs and concert venues will help encourage more young people to accept the vaccine.
Speaking to the press on Monday, PM Boris Johnson said 35% of 18-to-30-year-olds (roughly three million people) were unvaccinated. He urged young people to get fully-jabbed, saying it is the "right thing to help get back the freedoms you love".
He added: "I would remind everybody that some of life's most important pleasures and opportunities are likely to be increasingly dependent on vaccination."
British health authorities aren't the only ones who are moving to crack down as the UK sees among the highest rates of spread for the Delta variant: In the US, the State Department warned Monday afternoon that it had raised its travel advisory for the UK to "do not visit."