The Senate Commerce Committee passed a bill this week forbidding what has become known as vaccine passports in Iowa. Senate File 610 forbids the inclusion of vaccination status information on a government-issued ID, and forbids businesses and Iowa government entities from requiring vaccination as a condition for access to their premises. This bill would not apply to employees of these entities and would not apply to health care facilities. It also still allows the use of COVID-19 screenings in these entities. The reason for this bill is because of increasing concern about requirements to show proof of vaccination in order to shop, go to sporting events, or other routine activities in our daily lives.
I continue to receive a lot of messages about this issue from constituents with legitimate concerns about privacy and constitutional rights. For the record, I received my second vaccination shot this week because I personally believe that it’s important that everyone be vaccinated, especially those of us with a higher risk status. I also believe that there are a number of reasons a person should not have to show this piece of medical data, including personal privacy and individual freedom. In my view, SF 610 is a work in progress that will need some changes before it’s acceptable.