Coronavirus

Government won’t support cultural projects requiring proof of vaccination

cultural projects vaccine mandates
Photo: Sidney de Almeida/Shutterstock

After the Brazilian Labor Ministry issued an ordinance to prevent companies from firing employees who refuse to get a coronavirus vaccine, now the Culture Secretariat has issued a document that essentially denies funding to cultural projects that impose requirements on the public regarding proof of vaccination.

The document says projects have to limit themselves to checking citizens’ temperature, requiring Covid tests, and imposing mask use.

The department first discussed the idea back in September. According to Culture Secretary Mario Frias, “forbidding the infamous vaccine passport in [projects receiving government funding] ensures that the public purse won’t finance authoritarian and discriminatory measures.” For cultural ventures in cities and states where mandates are being enforced, applicants to public funding must carry out online events.

Evidence from other countries shows that vaccine mandates are effective in convincing more people to immunize themselves against the coronavirus — and consequently lowering the number of cases and deaths in areas where they are enforced. But after adopting an anti-vax approach to the pandemic — which was not echoed by the wider population — the Jair Bolsonaro government is now going after vaccine mandates.