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Council lifting vaccine pass requirements

Friday 25 March, 2022

Council will drop the need to use My Vaccine Passes at all its community facilities from 11.59pm, Wednesday 30 March.

Council’s chief executive, Nedine Thatcher Swann says passes have been used since December as a temporary measure to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of staff, customers and the community.

“As the operator of multiple community facilities Council took a very serious approach to reducing the risk of infection from COVID-19,” says Ms Thatcher Swann.

The requirement for Vaccine Passes was introduced on 3 December for people visiting the Customer Services Centre, Olympic Pool Complex, HB Williams Memorial Library, theatres and campsites.

“We undertook thorough risk assessments across our facilities and implemented measures in-line with health and safety legislation and guidance from the Government," says Ms Thatcher Swann.

“Since then, Tairāwhiti has largely been at Red. At the time of the decision, our region had one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country with a high number of vulnerable people in our community.”

She says Council has continually reviewed the requirement for vaccine passes with the onset of the Omicron variant.

MVP requirements were removed for people visiting the Fitzherbert Street Customer Service Centre early this week.

“It’s now timely to remove the requirement for all of our facilities considering the number of cases now in the community and changes to Red level settings and Vaccine passes announced by the Government this week.

“We will continue to require masks and use a range of tools to help reduce the risk of transmission.”

“I know it has been a frustrating and anxious time for some who have not been able to enjoy activities like camping and swimming. We’ve not intended to exclude anyone, but we have an absolute duty of care to use all tools available to keep everyone as safe as we can – particularly those who may be most vulnerable, which includes those who are not able to be vaccinated and our communities on the coast,” she says.

Council venues and facilities no longer requiring My Vaccine Passes from 11.59pm Wednesday 30 March include:

  • Customer Service centres at Fitzherbert Street and Te Puia Springs
  • Olympic Pool Complex
  • HB Williams Memorial Library
  • Bright Street Toilets
  • Summer camping sites
  • Lawson Field Theatre
  • War Memorial Theatre

While vaccine pass requirements will be relaxed, at Red there are still Government guidelines around limits and requirements for people who can attend events indoors.

Please contact the event organiser directly for advice on whether a vaccine passport is required.