South Island councils split on requiring Covid-19 vaccine passes

Christchurch City Council is among one of the strictest on rules for Covid-19 vaccination...
Christchurch City Council is among one of the strictest on rules for Covid-19 vaccination requirements for use of its public facilities. Photo: RNZ / Dan Dalgety
South Island councils are split over whether to let unvaccinated people into their facilities.

Most of the large east coast councils, including Christchurch City Council and Selwyn District Council, are requiring a vaccine pass to enter libraries, pools and museums - but none of the three West Coast councils will be using them.

Some of the largest South Island councils, Christchurch, Timaru and Dunedin, have the strictest rules around entry to facilities.

If you did not have the vaccine, you would be able to ride the bus or take a load to the dump, but that is about it.

All these places are fast closing in on achieving a 90 per cent vaccination rate.

However on the West Coast, where vaccine uptake has been the slowest of anywhere in the South Island, the welcome mat would largely remain out for the unvaccinated.

All three West Coast councils would allow entry to their facilities on the basis they were public buildings.

But on the other side of the island today, Selwyn District Council announced it will introduce vaccine pass requirements at a number of council facilities from Friday.

It chief executive David Ward said the council is aiming to maintain access to council services for as many people as possible, while protecting the health and safety of the community.

Ward says the health and safety of customers and staff, and the wider Selwyn community, are the key drivers behind the decision.

"Putting these measures in place not only protects our customers and our staff but means we can keep our services operating safely, with the least possible disruption,” he says.

From Friday (December 3), vaccine passes will be required at the Selwyn Sports Centre, Selwyn Aquatic Centre and Lincoln Event Centre, along with West Melton Community Recreation Centre, Rolleston Community Centre, Tai Tapu Community Centre, Dunsandel Community Centre, Darfield Community and Recreation Centre and at Te Ara Ātea. The council is working with staff in these locations to ensure they are vaccinated.

- Star News and RNZ








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