France tightens rules: no entry for the unvaccinated

As of: 01/16/2022 8:29 p.m

In France, people who have not been vaccinated will no longer have access to long-distance trains, cultural institutions or restaurants. So far, a negative corona test was enough. The parliamentary decision was preceded by protests.

The French parliament has decided to introduce a new corona vaccination certificate. In the National Assembly, 215 deputies voted in favor and 58 voted against. Seven MPs abstained.

The law stipulates that unvaccinated people over the age of 16 should no longer have access to restaurants, stadiums, cultural institutions and long-distance transport.

Nationwide 2G rule in France

In view of the enormously high number of infections, the French government wants to provide further incentives for corona vaccination. The regulation is intended to convert the currently valid health pass, which provides proof of vaccination, recovery or a current negative corona test, into a vaccination pass. The new vaccination certificate then corresponds to the German 2G rule.

A negative test will soon no longer be enough to gain access to numerous places. The regulation was originally supposed to take effect on January 15th. The project was delayed due to heated debates in the National Assembly and between the two chambers of parliament.

It is still unclear exactly when the new law will come into force: the Socialist MPs announced that they would submit the text to the Constitutional Court, which means that the official promulgation of the new law is likely to be postponed by several days.

Doubts about the effectiveness of the measure

More than 91 percent of adults in France are already fully vaccinated against the coronavirus. Critics therefore doubt that the new regulation will have a major impact. French President Emmanuel Macron and the government hope the rule will limit the number of corona patients filling overburdened hospitals across the country and prevent another lockdown. Such closures would deal another blow to the economy — and could also cloud Macron’s chances of winning the April 10 presidential election.

More than 76 percent of French intensive care beds are currently occupied by corona patients, most of whom are not vaccinated. Every day around 200 people die in connection with a corona infection. In the past few weeks, the number of infections in France has risen rapidly. Most recently, the registered number of infections within a week was around 2829 per 100,000 inhabitants nationwide. More than 300,000 new infections were reported every day.

Protests against French Corona policy

Around 54,000 people recently took to the streets in various French cities to protest against the planned restrictions and the government’s corona policy.

New rules for proof of vaccination came into force at the weekend. Adults whose second vaccination was seven months ago and who have not yet received a booster shot are now officially considered unvaccinated. According to the Ministry of Health, around 560,000 people are affected by the measure.

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