Many European governments like France and Italy have chosen to outright ban unvaccinated individuals from being able to fully participate in social life. In these countries, unvaccinated people are banned from entering hospitality venues like bars and restaurants.
Anybody who does not get vaccinated will have to suffer by living more difficult lives. The goal is to coerce those who are on the fence about the COVID-19 vaccines without actually making vaccinations obligatory.
In early July, French President Emmanuel Macron announced his intention to legalize segregating unvaccinated individuals. He wanted his parliament to pass a law that would prevent unvaccinated people from accessing hospitality venues.
Only those who are fully vaccinated, in possession of a negative polymerase chain reaction COVID-19 test or can prove that they have recovered from a previous coronavirus infection will be allowed to fully rejoin society. People can prove this through the use of a health pass or vaccine passport.
"Our decision is simple: To place restrictions on the unvaccinated, rather than on everyone," said Macron.
Elements within the French parliament attempted to prevent Macron's allies from passing the law. An estimated 161,000 people also went out into the streets of Paris to protest this. But despite these efforts, the law still passed. (Related: Vaccine passport now MANDATORY in France, following more than a year of corporate media propagandists claiming the idea was a "conspiracy theory.")
Starting in August, people who want to enter restaurants, bars, museums, cinemas and other large public gathering areas are required to present vaccine passports. Local governments also have the power to extend this prohibition further by making the passport a requirement to enter shopping malls.
Establishments that do not check the vaccination status of customers will be fined 1,500 euros ($1,773) in the first instance. On the third violation within a month, the fine rises to 9,000 euros ($10,643) and up to a year in prison.
Italy followed France's example soon after. From Aug. 6 onwards, Italy's equivalent of the vaccine passport, the "green pass," will be required to access the above-mentioned hospitality venues. In addition, people without green passes will also be barred from entering sporting venues, gyms, concerts, fairs and other cultural venues like theaters.
Business owners in Italy who do not enforce the green pass requirement risk getting fined up to 1,000 euros ($1,182).
In Ireland, the government has allowed hospitality venues to reopen their indoor facilities to people who can prove their vaccination status using European Union-issued digital vaccine passports.
Other EU nations have similar but less wide-ranging segregation policies. For example, in Greece, indoor dining is only open to people who can prove they are fully vaccinated.
In Belgium, outdoor events with more than 1,500 people will be limited to people with vaccine certificates starting on Aug. 13. In Spain, there is no national vaccine passport policy, but some regions within Spain have started requiring vaccine passports or negative COVID-19 tests to access hotels and restaurants.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will limit access to nightclubs in England starting in September to those who can prove that they are fully vaccinated.
The segregationist policies implemented by many European nations are achieving their intended effect. In the weeks since Macron announced his intention to prevent unvaccinated individuals from enjoying social activities, France has administered record numbers of COVID-19 vaccines.
In Italy, after the media reported that the government was discussing making certain activities unavailable for the unvaccinated, the number of daily first doses started ticking up. In many of the country's regions, requests for vaccines skyrocketed.
Walter Ricciardi, a so-called public health expert and an adviser to Italy's minister of health, stated the government's goal himself during a newspaper interview: "We can't force people to get vaccinated, but those who don't do it will have fewer opportunities."
Learn more about other attempts by governments around the world to coerce people into getting vaccinated by reading the latest articles at Vaccines.news.