A group of British Columbia business owners is banding together online to voice opposition to the province’s upcoming COVID-19 proof-of-vaccination program.
Sean Cahill, who owns a woodworking business, created the Facebook group BC Businesses Against Health Pass, which brings together local businesses and all like-minded individuals who share the belief that vaccination passports are unconstitutional.
“A lot of companies are frustrated. They’ve experienced a lot of the lockdowns and other mandates that are getting far more intrusive into people’s lives,” Cahill told The Epoch Times.
“Once you get to that point, once you cross that threshold, it sets the precedent for government and elected officials to be able to become more intrusive in our lives … and eventually it gets to the point where it’s too much.”
Cahill’s Facebook group aims to “facilitate a connection between people and between businesses,” while advocating for personal choice on whether to get vaccinated.
“Asking for people’s medical histories when they walk in the door is overstepping our bounds. Businesses should have a personal choice to decide whether that’s something I really want to do or not do. And then you should have your [patrons’ permission] as well. They should have a personal choice to decide whether that’s what they want to do or not do,” Cahill said.
Starting Sept. 13, all people born in 2009 or earlier will be asked to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 to access certain events, services, and business, such as restaurants, movie theatres, gyms, pools, and indoor concerts, weddings, and conferences. People must be vaccinated with at least one dose by Sept. 13 and be fully vaccinated by Oct. 24—meaning they must have had two doses at least seven days prior.
Sarah Rowat, founder of a separate Facebook group, BC Mass Against The Pass, said the vaccine passport system is “a violation of our human rights” and will negatively affect citizens, businesses, and communities.
“One of the concerns is it goes against our medical privacy. Any medical procedure or choices that we make on our own with our doctors should remain private. We shouldn’t be sharing our privacy with businesses—they shouldn’t know if we’ve had a vaccine or not,” she said in an interview.
Rowat said the vaccine passport system is also a violation of people’s right to “life, liberty, security of the person, and enjoyment of property” set out in the Canadian Bill of Rights.
She said the Facebook group members are sending liability notices to government and health officials, schools boards, and business employers regarding mandatory vaccination and masking.
Rowat criticized Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer, for going back on her word not to implement a mandatory vaccination program.
“On May 25 of this year, Bonnie Henry said that this virus has shown us that there are inequities in our society and [that] there is no way we will recommend inequities be increased by using vaccine passports,” she said.
“And then, just over a week ago, all of a sudden they just say we’re doing vaccine passports. It didn’t get a vote—completely undemocratic.”
Both Cahill and Rowat are mindful that the language group members use on Facebook in relation to COVID-19 vaccines could get them kicked off the social media platform, so they’re being extra careful.
“Please refrain from using any flag words that will get us banned. Such as Vax, Vaccine, Vaccination, mask, covid etc. Use Health Status instead,” warns a notice on the Facebook page of Cahill’s group.
Rowat says the administrators of her group “have to approve every post that goes out.”
“We’ve already been warned by Facebook that if people post, quote unquote, false information deemed by the fact-checkers on Facebook, that our group will be shut down.”