Here we are again, sunny weather, pubs opening, and discourse around public health behaviours all over the shop, rarely with the evidence or information required to back it up.
The likely introduction of ‘Vaccine Passports’ is a grim leap backwards for those activists who have spent years directing government strategy and policy towards a social model of disability rather than a medical one. It is, amongst other things, a recognisable behaviour of ‘able’ society setting up new barriers via the pretence of health and safety.
There are so many issues brought up in the international conversations about potential covid certification, including the systemic privacy issues raised by the prospect of international free access to healthcare data. It is impossible to contemplate the certification status happening without considering inevitable shifts in our existing social structure, such as ‘No jab, no job’ policies, the right to privacy regarding one’s medical history as set out in the Data Protection Act (1998) and subsequent social care legislation, not to mention the emotional impact of forcing disabled people and those with long term health conditions, already a marginalised group with inequal opportunities, to justify their existence on more bits of paper issued and controlled by a welfare system that runs on the constant humiliation and disbelief of those it was set up to support. You do not need to look far to read horror stories of PIP assessments and the subsequent trauma that many of us have experienced at the hands of NHS bureaucracy, having to advocate for ourselves constantly and prove our humanity just so that we can then argue that we deserve, and do actually have (!), human rights.
For some, however, it might be reassuring to know that the people you are sharing a public space with have been fully vaccinated. This is also an important part of the discussion, and draws on the widespread fear for our very lives that many of us felt over the last 12 months.
What do you think?
If you want to take action, #WeShallNotBeRemoved has an open call out to send in a short video clip of yourself expressing your views on the matter. They’ve provided some prompts for you to answer below. Once you’ve recorded yourself in landscape format, with clear audio and a light setting, please email your video via WeTransfer to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.