A bill provides for changes concerning the health pass. Its end date is pushed back to mid-2022. Sanctions are also planned to specifically target fraud.
The legislative framework surrounding the health pass will soon change. The government just tabled on Wednesday, October 13 a new bill « carrying various health vigilance provisions In Parliament.
The purpose of this text, which was presented on the same day in the Council of Ministers, aims above all to extend several provisions relating to the coronavirus epidemic which should normally be extinguished by the end of 2021.
When does the health pass end?
Among the most significant changes is the case of the sanitary pass, which is required to access many places open to the public – such as a restaurant, a gym or a cinema. The pass, to be valid, can be based on three indications: the vaccination of the individual, which is the most common case, the recovery of a sick person following a coronavirus infection, and finally the recent negative test result.
According to the latest news, the end of the device was set for November 15, 2021 – for its part, the government was rather targeting December 31 as the deadline, but a compromise had to be found with elected officials. This was already an extension of the use of the health pass, following the law relating to the management of the health crisis, which entered into force in August. But with the approach of the deadline, which is in a month, the executive considers that it is preferable to still maintain the device.
As it stands, the text pleads for an extension of the health pass until July 31, 2022, that is to say well beyond the French presidential election, scheduled for April next year. One of the justifications put forward by the government is that the country is going into winter and that this season is ” conducive to an acceleration of viral circulation “. In short, it would be dangerous to let our guard down now: “ the risk of an epidemic rebound remains proven ».
The fact that today, the indicators of epidemic spread of covid-19 are very encouraging: positivity rate, incidence rate, patients in intensive care, new patients in intensive care, tension of intensive care units, new cases. The drop is global and has been going on for several weeks. As for vaccination, it has reached high thresholds – 85.4% of eligible people have a complete vaccination schedule. In addition, reminders for a third dose are underway.
But there is one indicator that is worrying: the famous “R”, which designates the degree of reproduction of the virus (above 1, it spreads, below, no). If it is still under 1, its trajectory has been rising for a few weeks. It was less than 0.7 on September 18, it is 0.97 today. This could be the sign of a relaxation in barrier gestures. The situation therefore remains relatively uncertain in terms of health.
Sanctions specified against false health passes
In addition, the bill intends to harden ” the fight against health pass fraud by specifically cracking down on the transmission of a health pass with a view to its fraudulent use or the fact of establishing, offering, procuring and using a false health pass “. There are already legal mechanisms in the law that make it possible to sanction the use of false health passes (at random, that of Emmanuel Macron or Jean Castex). Several legal actions have also been noticed since this system was put in place.
Thus, the penalties provided for reach 5 years in prison and a fine of 75,000 euros. These are ceilings, which will not necessarily be reached in the event of a trial. The sanctions target several behaviors: the production of a fake health pass, but also its use, the fact of obtaining one or giving one to a third party. Even the fact of offering a fake health pass can trigger these sanctions. The measure relates to these practices in the broad sense, free or not, via the Internet or not.
Other provisions are also postponed to July 31, 2022, in order to maintain consistency in the legal structure. This is the case with the state of health emergency. ” A decree in the Council of Ministers remains necessary to declare it and its extension beyond a period of one month can only be decided by Parliament. “, However, recalls the executive. This is also the case for all the information systems used in this context. Their new deadline is also set for July 31, 2022.