COVID-19: Bay of Plenty bar owner worried anti-vaxxers using fake vaccine passes to enter hospitality businesses

A Bay of Plenty bar owner is worried anti-vaxxers are using fake vaccine passes to get into hospitality businesses. 

New Zealand moved into the new COVID Protection Framework - traffic light system - on Friday, which is based around vaccine passes. 

A Bay of Plenty bar owner, who has asked for his name and bar not to be named in fear of backlash from anti-vaccination members of their community, had to turn away 50 people who tried to enter with fake vaccine passes on Saturday night according to Stuff.  

The vaccine passes "look identical" the owner said and the only difference was that the information on the pass didn't match other identification or the QR code was blurry and couldn't be scanned. 

The owner said they spent around four hours observing practices in their area on Saturday night and was concerned other hospitality venues were just "letting anyone in".

With Aucklanders able to explore the country from December 15 when the hard border is removed, the bar owner is worried the issue could become more widespread.

"We're only a couple of days in [to the traffic light system] but we're going to have more outbreaks once Auckland opens," the bar owner told Stuff.

The bar owner said they had alerted police on Saturday night, but received no response.

"It's quite a health concern and nobody wanted to do anything about it," they said.

"What's the point of the vaccine pass if they're not even checking it."

Hamilton bar boss and Lawrenson Group chief executive John Lawrenson told Stuff he had heard of "literally two stories" of people trying to get in without a pass.