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Cole-Hamilton calls for fresh vote ahead of Covid ID expansion

November 22, 2021 5:14 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Speaking ahead of tomorrow's statement from the First Minister in which she is expected to set out an expansion of Covid ID cards, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader and health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton urged the government to ditch the "unworkable" scheme and demanded a full parliamentary vote on any further expansion before it comes into force.

Mr Cole-Hamilton said:

"This expensive and unworkable scheme is a very deliberate diversion from the real crisis in our NHS and the SNP's failure to build a contact tracing system that actually allows us to stamp out chains of infection. Ministers are just trying to look busy.

"We know transmission continues even among people who have received two vaccine doses. All this system does is give people false confidence that they will not pick up Covid-19 and encourages risk taking.

"The SNP and Greens still haven't provided any factual evidence that their Covid ID scheme is keeping Scotland safer. No wonder it has been attacked by everyone from health experts to civil liberties groups.

"Any expansion of the use of Covid ID cards shouldn't just be at the whim of Nicola Sturgeon. There should be a full parliamentary debate and vote on these proposals. Businesses and minority groups deserve to hear from politicians like Patrick Harvie why they have abandoned their longstanding opposition to Covid ID cards.

"Scottish Liberal Democrats believe that Covid ID cards should be abolished, not extended to more businesses trying to recover from the pandemic. The government should instead focus on the measures that we know can help us defeat the virus: testing, tracing and vaccinating."