Thank you to the SC Arts Alliance for this blog content!
Last week, Governor McMaster signed H.3126 into law. While much attention was given to the bill’s primary action - banning vaccine mandates for public employers, it also bans “vaccine passports”.
Here’s what’s in the bill:
Ban on Vaccine Mandates
Public Employers (counties, cities, agencies, school districts, public universities) may not require COVID vaccines as a requirement for employment (or for students).
This applies to contractors and third-party vendors as well - public employers cannot require those contracted to be vaccinated either.
Those impacted by federal mandates must submit certain paperwork to the state.
Banning Vaccine Passports
No entity which provides “public accommodation” - public or private - can utilize vaccination status as a requirement for entering facilities or participating in services if that entity is “supported by state action”.
“Places of Public Accommodation” is defined broadly and includes hotels, restaurants (wherever food is sold for consumption on premise), clinics, retailers, movie theaters, any place of entertainment, and more.
“Supported by State Action” is more specifically defined as any business that requires state or local permits or licenses to operate.
Bottom Line: If your organization/venue requires state or local permitting or licensing, then you are not permitted to require proof of vaccination to enter the facility, or participate in programs.
Go Deeper: Read the bill to see all of the specifics.
Note that Together SC, nor the SC Arts Alliance, do not provide legal advice and any insights provided should not be misconstrued as legal guidance.