The Scottish Government has said that higher risk venues and events will have two-and-a-half weeks to get used to the new COVID-19 certification scheme, before the measures are legally enforced. 

The vaccination passport scheme will still be implemented from October 1 in Scotland, which means that people will have to show their vaccination status to enter venues and events. This applies to venues such as nightclubs, unseated indoor live events with more than 4,000 people, outdoor live events with a capacity of more than 4,000 and any event with more than 10,000 people present. 

This will apply to events such as football matches, festivals and concerts. 

Legal enforcement of the system will not come into effect until October 18. 

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “This is a very limited scheme and we hope this will allow businesses to remain open and prevent any further restrictions as we head into autumn and winter.

“The two-and-a-half weeks – effectively a grace period – before legal enforcement applies will allow businesses to test, adapt and build confidence in their own practical arrangements to comply with the scheme.”

The news follows last week’s announcement that the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) was getting ready to launch a legal challenge against the Government over the COVID-19 passport scheme, as it could have a negative impact on night clubs and venues. 

Deputy First Minister Swinney added: “We know from expert public health analysis that we must do all we can to stem the rise in cases and reduce the pressure on the NHS. Vaccine certificates have a role to play as part of a wider package of measures. They add a further layer of protection in certain higher risk settings.

“I also want to ensure that as many people get vaccinated as possible and particularly to increase uptake in the younger age cohort, so anything that helps to incentivise that is helpful. 

“Scotland is not unique in introducing such an approach. Certification schemes are in place across Europe, including Ireland and France, and the Welsh Government is also planning similar measures.” 

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