And for business owners, the punishment is even more severe.
French President Emmanuel Macron has already controversially announced that, starting in August, everyone visiting a restaurant, café, shopping center, hospital, or traveling on a long-distance train in France would be forced to display a specialized COVID health pass.
And now we have some idea of the punishments that France is proposing for those who don’t comply.
According to the law, people who fail to provide valid health passes will face up to six months in prison and those businesses who welcome people without using health passes will face up to a year of prison and a €45,000 fine.
Many restaurant owners are terrified that new required COVID permits will transform them into virus cops rather than providers of gastronomic delights.
The repercussions are part of a harsh campaign by the French government to force individuals to receive the coronavirus vaccine in the face of widespread demonstrations in major cities.
Citizens must present an app pass demonstrating that they have been completely vaccinated, or that they have an approved negative test or recovered from the infection in recent times.
According to President Emmanuel Macron, From August 1st, people who cannot show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test (at their own expense) will be barred from accessing public transportation, visiting a theater, shopping center, bar, café, restaurant, and other places.
The penalties are one of the strictest in the western world.
Macron and his cabinet claim the COVID permits are the only way of protecting hospitals from becoming overloaded again – and to avoid harsher measures like additional lockdowns – citing rising illnesses across the country.
Many restaurant operators stated they find it difficult to keep up with continuously changing health regulations.
As previously reported, France has faced mass protests about the harsh proposals.
By Ken Macon