CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming’s governor is barring state officials from requiring people to be vaccinated against COVID-19 before they may access state property or services.
Gov. Mark Gordon, a Republican, announced the directive against “vaccine passports” Friday, The Cheyenne Post reports.
“Vaccine passport programs have the potential to politicize a decision that should not be politicized,” Gordon said in a statement. “They would divide our citizens at a time when unity in fighting the virus is essential, and harm those who are medically unable to receive the vaccine.”
He encouraged Wyoming residents over 16 to get vaccinated but called it “a personal choice based upon personal circumstances.”
Gordon’s directive encouraged Wyoming’s cities, towns, counties and private businesses to provide full access to places and services regardless of a person’s vaccine status.
While some U.S. businesses look at ways to require customers to be vaccinated, officials in President Joe Biden’s administration have said there are no plans for a general federal vaccine passport. Several GOP-led states besides Wyoming have prohibited vaccine passports.
Over 180,000 people in Wyoming, or almost one-third of the state’s population, have been vaccinated against COVID-19.