Norwegian Cruise Line Sues Florida Surgeon General Over ‘Vaccine-Passport’ Ban – The Wall Street Journal


Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. 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 as much as $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 Dr. Rivkees because he is the state official who has authority to enforce the ban, according to the company’s complaint.

A spokeswoman for the Florida governor’s office said Norwegian’s stance discriminated against children and individuals who can’t be vaccinated, and noted the state’s legal efforts against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s sailing restrictions and protocols.

“Apparently Norwegian prefers the shackles of the CDC to the freedom offered by Florida,” the spokeswoman said in a statement. “This administration will not tolerate such widespread discrimination.”

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