European Parliament to require that lawmakers and staff show valid Covid pass before entering – reports

The EU’s Directorate General for Personnel has informed lawmakers and staff they will have to show a Covid pass to enter parliamentary buildings in Brussels, Luxembourg or Strasbourg from November 3, according to media reports.

The measure will come into effect on Wednesday after a majority of the European Parliament’s Vice Presidents backed requiring a Covid pass to limit the risk of spreading the virus, an email sent by the EU office, seen by POLITICO, confirmed.

The decision by Klaus Welle, the secretary-general of the European Parliament, to sign off on the Covid pass requirement sparked some opposition from MEPs, who suggested it is a “breach” of their fundamental rights.

“To our knowledge, the European Parliament would be the first in Europe to implement such a measure,” a group of MEPs stated, in a letter to European Parliament President David Sassoli. 

“This would breach a very fundamental principle in a democratic house: never should an elected representative, having fulfilled all legal obligations, be prevented from entering the Parliament,” François-Xavier Bellamy from the EPP, Michèle Rivasi from the Greens, Virginie Joron from the Identity and Democracy group and Anne-Sophie Pelletier from The Left, among others, stated.

The email announcing the restriction comes as EU member state Slovakia was reportedly forced to cancel a parliamentary session after a lawmaker tested positive for Covid. The Slovakian legislature has apparently been adjourned until November 2 following the confirmed infection of a member of the ruling coalition.