All government entities and private businesses in Texas are now banned from requiring proof of vaccination as a condition for service or entry, with Governor Greg Abbott declaring that the state is “open 100%”. The Epoch Times has the story.
“Texas is open 100%, and we want to make sure you have the freedom to go where you want without limits,” the Republican Governor announced in a video post on Twitter.
The Lone Star state in March ended its statewide mask mandate and allowed all businesses to open at full capacity after having implemented mandates and restrictions due to the pandemic.
Abbott announced on Monday with the signing of the legislation that “no business or government entity can require a person to provide a vaccine passport or any other vaccine information as a condition of receiving any service or entering any place”.
The new law SB 968 covers many aspects of the public health disaster and public health emergency preparedness and response. It was approved unanimously in April and was passed by a vote of 146-2 by the state House in May.
Effective immediately, Texas businesses “may not require a customer to provide any documentation certifying the customer’s Covid vaccination or post-transmission recovery on entry to, to gain access to, or to receive service from the business”, the legislation states. State agencies in charge of different business sectors can require that businesses comply with the new law as a condition to be authorised to conduct business in Texas.
Furthermore, businesses that don’t comply with the law will not be able to enter any state contracts and will be ineligible to receive a grant.
Businesses can still implement their own Covid infection control protocols “in accordance with state and federal law to protect public health”.
Abbott had signed an executive order in April that banned government entities from requiring vaccine passports as a condition to receive services or gain entry to premises. The order included any private businesses that receive public funding. But the executive order did not apply to entirely private businesses, which the new law covers with regard to vaccine passports.
Worth reading in full.