07 February 2022, by Victoria Séveno
An online petition calling for the coronavirus certificate system to be abolished has received over 550.000 signatures in just a few short days, with various politicians also voicing their support for the campaign.
Growing demand for 3G and 2G rules to be scrapped
The so-called 3G policy has faced growing backlash from politicians and members of the public alike over the past few weeks, and as the Dutch government faces increasing pressure to present a long-term plan for lifting national restrictions, a petition launched by a group called Onverdeeld Open has received around 590.000 signatures in just four days.
The petition, initiated by former State Secretary for Economic Affairs Mona Keijzer alongside two doctors, calls for the “immediate abolition” of the certificate system. In a manifesto published on their website, the group says 3G and 2G rules “constitute an unjustified curtailment of fundamental rights that is harmful to society,” while at the same time “[increasing] socio-economic inequality [and] polarisation and division in our society.”
The campaign has received significant support from Dutch academics, doctors, celebrities, and politicians, including comedian Guido Weijers and leader of Forum for Democracy, Thierry Baudet. A similar petition launched in mid-January has also seen its support grow over the past few days, and has now received over 415.00 signatures.
Dutch Health Minister defends coronavirus certificate system
3G rules have been in place since the summer of 2021, and while the cabinet is still considering introducing 2G legislation – which would mean only vaccinated and recently recovered people are issued a valid coronavirus certificate – the process has been postponed a number of times, with Dutch Health Minister Ernst Kuipers saying more research is needed in order to determine whether the stricter rules are worth it.
A recent TU Delft study found that both 2G and 3G rules would be largely ineffective in combatting the spread of COVID-19. However, Kuipers stands by the current 3G system, saying it is “still necessary in this phase of the pandemic” and is still effective in limiting the spread of the virus.