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Wales drops use of Covid passes at indoor and outdoor venues

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The use of vaccine passports as a condition of entry for indoor and outdoor events in Wales will be scrapped from Friday, the government has announced.

Places such as sports grounds, nightclubs, cinemas, theaters and concert halls have been required to check the vaccination status of customers under coronavirus rules.

But on Thursday evening, Dawn Bowden, the deputy minister for arts and sport, announced that the restrictions were coming to an end.

But the minister said venues could still require proof of vaccination as a condition of entry if they choose to do so.

Ms Bowden said: ‘When introduced, the Covid pass was part of a series of measures to give people confidence, keep businesses open and keep Wales safe.

“I would like to thank all sectors for their cooperation and feedback during this difficult time.

“With increasing numbers of people vaccinated and boosted and thanks to the hard work and efforts of everyone across Wales, we are confident that coronavirus rates are coming down and we can look forward to better times to come.”

An international Covid-19 vaccination passport is still a requirement for overseas travel, the minister said, and urged travelers to check the rules of their destination country before planning a trip.

Welsh Tories, who have criticized the use of Covid passes, welcomed the decision to scrap the measures.

Shadow Health Minister Russell George said: “I am delighted to finally see the back side of these utterly failed, coercive, ineffective, expensive and unproven vaccine passports.

“This illiberal measure has never shown any signs of success, proving only to be a burden on businesses and consumers. Far from being helpful, they were harmful and disruptive.

He continued: “Given all the problems with vaccine passports and their lack of effectiveness, Labor should never have put them on the table in the first place.

“Our focus now shifts to securing commitments by ending all Covid laws and forcing labor
The Government must end its focus on pet projects so Wales can get back on track and recover from the pandemic, even though Labor’s record suggests it will be unable to do so.