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Norwegian Cruise Line sues Florida surgeon general over ‘vaccine-passport’ ban


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Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. has sued Florida’s surgeon general, challenging the state’s barring of businesses from requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination and intensifying the standoff between the company and Florida.

The cruise operator is sticking with its policy to require full vaccinations for all crew and passengers, including children, for initial sailings through Oct. 31 after more than a yearlong hiatus and billions of dollars in losses. That policy, if maintained in Florida, would result in the company being fined up to $5,000 for each passenger affected, it said.

The Miami-based company filed the lawsuit Tuesday against Scott Rivkees, the state surgeon general, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Norwegian asked the court to block and declare unlawful the enforcement of the ban on requiring proof of vaccination. Norwegian only sued Rivkees because he is the state official who has authority to enforce the ban, according to the company’s complaint. The company also argued that restricting the flow of information—in this case, vaccine documentation—affects freedom of speech protected by the First Amendment.

 

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/norwegian-cruise-line-sues-florida-surgeon-general-over-vaccine-passport-ban-2021-07-13?mod=mw_latestnews

 

More at the link.  Also an expanded version is available at the Wall Street Journal if you have a subscription.

Edited by RocketMan275
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9 minutes ago, RocketMan275 said:

Also an expanded version is available at the Wall Street Journal if you have a subscription.

 

A little Google-fu and you can read the full article without a subscription.😉

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Just now, Two Wheels Only said:

 

A little Google-fu and you can read the full article without a subscription.😉

Thanks for pointing that out but I always like to mention when something requires a subscription.  Note: I do subscribe to WSJ.

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10 minutes ago, RaftingJeremy said:

Well this is an interesting twist 

Interesting, but not entirely unexpected.  I guess it will give us one more thing to watch.  As long as nothing affects AK, I'm good.  I do wish that NCL would be able to concentrate more on running a tight ship than wrestling with the state of FL.

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12 minutes ago, davencl said:

In NCL's defense if they didn't require 100% I would cancel my current reservations.

While NCL may need a defense in court, they certainly don't need any defense here.  It's a fact that 98.3% of the posters in this forum desire 100% vaccinations and the other 1.7% probably aren't serious about taking a cruise anytime soon. 😎

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I am happy to see NCL taking this stand, but I am also glad I changed my September Sky (now Gem) sailing to the Breakaway out of NYC for later in the month! So far, Carnival and Celebrity have been able to get around the law, because they are technically not denying service to unvaccinated passengers based on their vaccination status, since they are allowing up to 5% unvaccinated. NCL's 100% requirement will make it tougher to skirt the law.

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2 minutes ago, JamieLogical said:

So far, Carnival and Celebrity have been able to get around the law, because they are technically not denying service to unvaccinated passengers based on their vaccination status, since they are allowing up to 5% unvaccinated.

Do you know how Celebrity is determining that at most 5% will be unvaccinated for each sailing? 
I know they are calling people but anyone could say something on the phone and have a different story when they arrive at the port. 
 

Say the ship is sailing with 100 people total and 10 are unvaccinated when they arrive at port. What is Celebrity’s plan? Will they grab 100 more vaccinated people from the pier and put them on the cruise, so the unvaccinated rate drops from 10% to 5%? 
 

I’m seriously wondering how they plan on monitoring this. I don’t really have a problem with the number of unvaccinated people, I’m more so just curious from a logistic standpoint. 

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4 minutes ago, Seany527 said:

Do you know how Celebrity is determining that at most 5% will be unvaccinated for each sailing? 
I know they are calling people but anyone could say something on the phone and have a different story when they arrive at the port. 
 

Say the ship is sailing with 100 people total and 10 are unvaccinated when they arrive at port. What is Celebrity’s plan? Will they grab 100 more vaccinated people from the pier and put them on the cruise, so the unvaccinated rate drops from 10% to 5%? 
 

I’m seriously wondering how they plan on monitoring this. I don’t really have a problem with the number of unvaccinated people, I’m more so just curious from a logistic standpoint. 

 

You are being asked to "volunteer" proof of vaccination at the pier. If you do not offer said proof, you are treated as unvaccinated, meaning you are required to pay out of pocket for three COVID tests, (embarkation, mid-cruise, and debarkation), you are required to mask at all times while outside your stateroom unless eating/drinking, and you are required to use designated sections of the MDRs and theater. The trick is, they aren't being denied service. No one knows exactly what happens if they hit that 5% capacity and actually have to turn someone away. So far, the ships have been sailing at about 98-99% vaccinated, so it hasn't come up as an issue yet.

Edited by JamieLogical
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1 hour ago, RocketMan275 said:

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. has sued Florida’s surgeon general, challenging the state’s barring of businesses from requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination and intensifying the standoff between the company and Florida.

The cruise operator is sticking with its policy to require full vaccinations for all crew and passengers, including children, for initial sailings through Oct. 31 after more than a yearlong hiatus and billions of dollars in losses. That policy, if maintained in Florida, would result in the company being fined up to $5,000 for each passenger affected, it said.

The Miami-based company filed the lawsuit Tuesday against Scott Rivkees, the state surgeon general, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Norwegian asked the court to block and declare unlawful the enforcement of the ban on requiring proof of vaccination. Norwegian only sued Rivkees because he is the state official who has authority to enforce the ban, according to the company’s complaint. The company also argued that restricting the flow of information—in this case, vaccine documentation—affects freedom of speech protected by the First Amendment.

 

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/norwegian-cruise-line-sues-florida-surgeon-general-over-vaccine-passport-ban-2021-07-13?mod=mw_latestnews

 

More at the link.  Also an expanded version is available at the Wall Street Journal if you have a subscription.

I support NCL's stand.

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There goes our September cruise out of Miami. I can just see NCL cancelling cruises as they fight this out in court. Good news is our final payment isn't due till next week. 😃I support NCL, too, but this doesn't bode well for upcoming sailings. 😟

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3 minutes ago, DCGuy64 said:

There goes our September cruise out of Miami. I can just see NCL cancelling cruises as they fight this out in court. Good news is our final payment isn't due till next week. 😃I support NCL, too, but this doesn't bode well for upcoming sailings. 😟

 

That was my exact take on it. "Good for NCL! But I feel bad for anyone who was planning on sailing out FL this summer/fall!

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3 minutes ago, JamieLogical said:

 

That was my exact take on it. "Good for NCL! But I feel bad for anyone who was planning on sailing out FL this summer/fall!

Interestingly, the Gem is mentioned by name in the complaint filed by NCLH. I'm reading it now.

 

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10 minutes ago, JamieLogical said:

 

That was my exact take on it. "Good for NCL! But I feel bad for anyone who was planning on sailing out FL this summer/fall!

So glad my next cruise isn't until March 2020.

So glad I'm sailing out of NOLA.

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1 minute ago, saltsandknit said:

I am holding out hope my Sept cruise will sail and that NCL will move forward regardless or will win an injunction to the law. 

Since we're on the same cruise, I hope you're right! 🤣

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Just now, saltsandknit said:

Man I hope so, I will be looking at September backup cruises tonight after work

At this point I'm exhausted with booking and rebooking over and over. We still don't know if our cruise in Italy is a go next month, and I frankly haven't the heart to start over again in case the Gem gets cancelled (again). Good luck to you!

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