Over 70% of Dutch say those vaccinated against Covid deserve more privileges
About 73 percent of the Dutch public is in favor of allowing those who are willing to receive a coronavirus vaccine more freedom from social restrictions than those who do not. The concept also received support from a 53-percent majority of those who do not intend to get vaccinated.
The results of the study were published on Friday by researchers from the Erasmus University, Maastricht University, Roskilde University, TU Delft, and public health agency RIVM. A total of 1,640 Dutch people took part in the survey.
"73 percent of those surveyed were in favor of the option in which people who were given a vaccine receive a vaccination certificate, which allows them to continue to visit certain places when there is an outbreak of the virus in their region," says researcher Niek Mouten from TU Delft, according to ANP. They were asked if it was improper to hypothetically allow the vaccinated public access to stores, bars, restaurants, gyms and care centers when those without the vaccination would be barred from those facilities.
Another theoretical perk for the vaccinated would include entry to events where 1.5 meters distance cannot be guaranteed, such as concerts, sporting events, and festivals. "71 percent of those questioned would recommend this variant to the government,” he says.
“The disadvantages for the people who do not want the vaccine are small and the advantages for society are large because it helps keep social and economic activities going,” Mouten says in an interview with Trouw. He adds that many see a vaccine certification as an acceptable and proportional reward to people for showing solidarity.
Opponents to the idea were most concerned about a breach of personal privacy connected to the vaccine certification and its use to gain entry to certain activities. Many also saw the certificates as being susceptible to fraud, and the possibility of a division in society. The latter was one reason Health Minister Hugo de Jonge said that social restrictions should remain in the country for all members of the public, regardless of their vaccination status.
De Jonge was waiting for a report on the ethics of such a policy, the newspaper noted. In the meantime, Mouten wants politicians to begin discussing the legality of such a certification with the first vaccinations expected to be carried out on January 8.
Even with quick movement, Mouten does not thing that such a policy could be introduced before everyone in the public has had the chance to be vaccinated. “So probably sometime in the summer,” he tells ANP.