Refusing service to non-vaccinated people may be discriminatory, warns Unia
Monday, 03 May 2021
Refusing access to goods or services to people because they are not vaccinated against Covid-19 can be discriminatory, equality centre Unia stated in an opinion sent to the various authorities.
While vaccination is not compulsory in Belgium, making access conditional on vaccination could have the same result as compulsory vaccination, Unia (the Centre for Equal Opportunities and Opposition to Racism) argued.
Unia pointed out that some employers would not want to provide services to unvaccinated people to protect their staff, but that that objective is “not legitimate.”
“Under no circumstances, in the absence of a legal obligation, may the employer make the access of customers dependent on their vaccination status,” the opinion states.
According to Unia, things become more problematic when certain groups that cannot be vaccinated due to health reasons, their living conditions or religious beliefs come into the picture.
These groups will not be affected by the incentive effect, but they risk being excluded from essential services such as housing, health care, banking and insurance. “For these groups, denying access to goods or services could be considered a form of discrimination.”