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Today begins Italy’s new requirement that people present a ‘Green Pass’—a nationwide digital COVID-19 certificate—to enter public establishments, including indoor eateries, gyms, theatres, museums and various other social spaces.

The digital application produces a QR code that’s linked to an individual’s vaccination records, recent test results or records of his or her past recovery from COVID-19, which must be presented when accessing public venues. The certificate is available and accepted in both digital and paper formats.


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Starting in September, the new policy will also affect schoolteachers, students and school administrators at Italian schools and universities, where they’ll need to provide their Green Pass to be allowed on campus. School staff members who fail to show their health passes for five consecutive days will be suspended and have their salaries frozen, Euronews reported.

“We are committed to do our best to reopen schools safely in September and for classes to be in-person. With this new law, we order a compulsory Green Pass as a requirement to access schools for all staff members,” Roberto Speranza, Italy’s Minister of Health, said.

Also beginning in September, proof of vaccination or a negative test will also be required for long-distance travel. According to The Local, a Green Pass will be required to board planes, high-speed trains and buses and ferries traveling between more than two regions.

According to The New York Times, Italians seem to have widely accepted and shown support for the new Green Pass new mandate. Some protests have popped up across Italy, with mask-less marchers carrying signed that read “Green Pass dictatorial measure” and “We are for yes to freedom”, although turnouts at such rallies have been lower than organizers had hoped.

France’s recent implementation of a similar Health Pass sparked mass protests among its citizenry. Still, France is set to expand its health pass provision on August 9 to regulate the public’s access to restaurants, bars, planes and trains.

Yet, according to a Euronews report, several other E.U. countries, including Austria, Cypress and Denmark, have successfully launched similar schemes for verifying people’s health status.

Any residents or visitors who don’t abide by Italy’s new Green Pass requirements face hefty fines ranging from €400 (about $471) up to €1000 (about $1,176).

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