From November, the public will be able to download or print their vaccination certificate containing a QR code.
The government has confirmed that they will be needed during large, high-risk events like festivals, when they will not be needed to access essential services.
The Cabinet is working to determine to what extent they will be used and more information will be available in a few weeks.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said there were other critical aspects the government had yet to work out the details of.
This includes the rules for individual businesses that want to use the certificate to deny customers.
“Areas where we would probably make these high risk environments mandatory … How do we create a legal framework where we don’t have a mandate but where someone wants to use it?” How do we create a legal framework so that they can do it if it’s within certain parameters?
“And areas where you can’t use it. So there are areas where we would like to be very explicit, that you should never refuse essential services; food, access to health services, pharmacies, etc.”
The government is in discussions with the hospitality industry, but some cafes and restaurants have already publicly stated that they do not want to ban unvaccinated guests or staff.
Greg Harford of Retail NZ said mandatory use seems unlikely in his industry, although some companies like the idea.
There are also those who would find it difficult to enforce a ban – which is why he would like them to have a choice.
“The biggest thing the government can do to help in this space is to explicitly give companies the power to require their staff to be vaccinated, if the employer thinks it is necessary. It could also extend to customers. .
“What is important is that each company is able to make its own decision on these matters.”
He also wanted much clearer details on what will be considered an essential service that cannot turn away unvaccinated people.
“There has been a lot of confusion around what constitutes an essential product at different alert levels. I think as long as the government is clear on what it defines as essential for the purposes of vaccination certificates, it will help resolve some of these issues.
Gray Power fears technical problems
Gray Power’s Jo Miller is worried about those who might have trouble using the technology to upload a certificate.
“I think the government has a responsibility to make sure, even if it asks for help or help to do it, but to allow these kinds of people to access it more easily so that they feel free to go out and about and that if they want to go to summer events with their family, they can go there comfortably. “
Dr Andrew Chen, expert in digital technology, reassures us.
He said the certificate system was primarily paper-based with an app as an add-on for convenience.
“The app is just for convenience, in that you have one less piece of paper to carry around. Hopefully that won’t shut out too many people.
“Anyone who needs a certificate will hopefully be able to go to a library or citizens’ advice office or find a family member who can help them sign up for My Covid Record,” then generate and print a certificate for itself if it needs it. “
But he’s worried what it all means for those with legitimate medical reasons not to get the shot.
“It may be safer for an immunocompromised person, for example, not to go to a festival, but you want to make sure that they can still participate in society and not live in a second class of society.
“So we need to know a bit more about how the system will be run for these people.”
The government is expected to release more details in the coming weeks.