The Government announced on Wednesday that New Zealand will do away with vaccine passes and vaccine mandates for some of the workforce on 4 April, in a major loosening of the country’s tough COVID-19 restrictions. The COVID-19 protection framework, known as the traffic-light system, will stay in place but will remain flexible to change, including if new variants of the virus emerge.
The main changes to the framework from 4 April are:
- Government vaccine mandates will be removed for all but health, prison and border workers
- Vaccine passes will not be required by government legislation – however businesses may still elect to use them as a condition of entry to site. Businesses still have the right to set entry requirements on-site based on their views of reasonably managing risks to health and or business continuity. In the interim, it is recommended that businesses review their risk assessments based on the current Omicron threat.
- Display of QR codes will not be compulsory for business but now optional from this weekend 26 March
- Under red setting the public gathering cap will be raised from 100 to 200
- Under orange setting face mask use will be the same as the current which in construction means for customer-facing roles and otherwise depending on a risk assessment
- Under green face masks are encouraged but not required
- Isolation remains at 7 days
CHASNZ have indicated on their website that the COVID-19 protocols will be updated before 4 April.