Ontario COVID-19 vaccine passports will remain at 2 doses, Premier Doug Ford says

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Premier Doug Ford says the current requirements for the COVID-19 vaccine certificate will remain as is.

When asked by a reporter if the premier would update the vaccine certificate requirement to include three doses instead of two, Ford said “not right at this point.”

Ford made the short comment at a press conference on Thursday where he revealed a reopening plan for the province that included lifting closures on restaurant indoor dining and gyms, among easing of other capacity restrictions starting Jan. 31.

The proof of vaccination system will continue to apply to certain indoor public settings such as restaurants, gyms and theatres for at least the next two months as outlined in the reopening plan.

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The government also recently mandated that Ontarians use a vaccine certificate that includes a scannable QR code to gain entry into those settings, as the older versions were susceptible to fraud.

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As of Thursday, of the aged 12 and older population, 88.8 per cent are fully vaccinated. Meanwhile, third-dose immunization is at 44.8 per cent — more than 5.7 million Ontarians have received a booster shot.

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Ontario Liberal Party Leader Steven Del Duca slammed Ford for not updating the vaccine passport requirements to three shots.

“It’s time Ontario required booster shots for vaccine certificates, @fordnation. This is a measure that will increase booster uptake, make the reopening safer, and get us back to doing the things we love sooner,” Del Duca wrote on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath said the vaccine passports should be further expanded into more non-essential businesses, LCBOs, and cannabis retail stores.

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“Those places should require certificates as well,” Horwath said.

“It’s also curious that this issue of the third dose was just out of hand dismissed by the premier,” Horwath continued. “That the idea of the third dose being a requirement for the fully vaccinated passport was completely ignored.”

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