Gaining the support of Prime Minister Jean Castex’s cabinet earlier this week, the bill proposes to deny “access to transport or to some locations, as well as certain activities” to those unable to prove that they received a “preventative treatment” for Covid-19, including a vaccine, or produce a negative virus screening.
The draft bill has been harshly denounced by members of the opposition, with the spokesman of the right-wing National Rally party (RN), Sebastien Chenu, accusing the government of planning a “health dictatorship.” RN head Marine Le Pen, meanwhile, blasted the proposed measure as “essentially totalitarian.”
“In a backhanded way, this bill does not aim to make vaccinations mandatory, but will prevent anybody who doesn't comply from having a social life.”
The draft law is headed for a vote as the government prepares to roll out its mass vaccination drive on Sunday. While the European Union approved an immunization developed by Pfizer and BioNTech this week, opinion polls suggest French citizens remain deeply skeptical about the new jab. Several recent surveys showed more than 50 percent of respondents saying they had no intention of taking the vaccine, which could present obstacles for the government’s goal to inoculate 15 million people by June.