Based on what is now known about the risk of the COVID-19 vaccines, Texans have good reason to proceed
with caution. As of July 30th, 2021, the government Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS)
reported that at least 12,366 people have died, and at least 545,338 experienced adverse reactions to the vaccines.
Unfortunately, some businesses in Texas are requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination from their customers.
This goes against the law. Earlier this year, the legislature passed Senate Bill 968, which prohibits vaccine
passports. This bill states that businesses may not require their customers to provide any kind of documentation
which shows vaccination status. In addition, the bill also requires state agencies to ensure that businesses
comply with this new law.
Texans should have the freedom to move about freely in their state, without fear of discrimination based upon
their vaccination status. Any business which requires proof of vaccination to provide a service is breaking the
law, and must be held accountable.
I join Senate Health & Human Services Committee Chairwoman Kolkhorst, the author of Senate Bill 968, in
urging the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to enforce the COVID-19 passport prohibition in the bill by
ensuring that restaurants who have begun requiring proof of vaccination are made to comply with the law. I
also encourage any Texas customer who is told to disclose his or her vaccination status to make a complaint to
a state agency which regulates the business.
One restaurant which has chosen to ask customers to disclose their vaccination status has even gone so far as to
require families with children under age 12 to dine at outside seating rather than indoors because the
COVID-19 vaccines have not been approved for children ages 11 and younger.
No one in this state should be discriminated against simply for not having received a COVID-19 vaccine, nor
should they be required to disclose such personal medical information for reasons not even remotely connected
Individuals may have any number of reasons for choosing not to receive the vaccine. Some may be
uncomfortable taking a vaccine which does not yet have full FDA approval and which features mRNA
technology, which is very new to the realm of medicine. Others may be concerned about the risk of heart
inflammation, which is named as a potential adverse reaction on the package inserts for both the Pfizer and
Moderna vaccines. Some may have religious beliefs or other reasons of conscience for choosing not to get any of the COVID-19 vaccines.
It is time to stop treating the unvaccinated as though they are already infected with the virus by default.
Texans were assured earlier this year that their personal decision not to receive the COVID-19 vaccine would
not affect their ability to move about freely in our society. While employees of Texas businesses are still in need
of similar protection, customers have already been guaranteed this ability, which is now codified in statute.
These establishments have no excuse for not obeying the law. They are not prohibited from implementing
safety precautions as they see fit, but they may not ask patrons to disclose whether or not they have received a
As a customer in the state of Texas, you do not have to share your COVID-19 vaccination status. Period.
Again, I encourage anyone who is asked by a business as a term of service to disclose whether or not they have
received the COVID-19 vaccine to contact the Texas Comptroller’s office at 512-463-4600 or another state
agency with regulatory, licensing, or permit authority for businesses.