CDC approves first revenue cruise from Florida, but DeSantis threatens fines

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Posted at 5:18 AM, May 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-28 05:18:54-04

MIAMI, Fla. — Governor DeSantis' office has responded to rules set in place by Celebrity Cruises for their first scheduled cruise out of Florida on June 26.

"The CDC has no legal authority to set any sort of requirements to cruise," the governor's office said. "Moreover, the CDC has acknowledged, on record, that the federal government chose not to make a legal requirement for vaccine passports. Now the CDC provides coercive “guidance,” in the absence of any federal law or congressional authorization, requiring cruise ships to violate state law."

DeSantis says the vaccine requirements put in place by the cruise line violate the spirit of the Governor’s Emergency Order 21-81, which prohibits vaccine passports and protects the fundamental rights of Floridians – including the right to medical privacy. The governor also says the policy would be a violation of Florida’s recently enacted law banning vaccine passports, SB 2006, effective July 1.

"Companies doing business in Florida, including Celebrity Cruises, should immediately cease to impose such discriminatory policies upon individuals. Companies that violate this law would be subject to a fine of $5,000 each time they require a customer to present a 'vaccine passport' for service," DeSantis said.

His office ended the statement by saying "we look forward to seeing Celebrity Cruises set sail in compliance with Florida law."

It is unclear what happens from there between Celebrity Cruises and the state.