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On the Covid certificate and its presumed continuation [Geneva, Switzerland]

Geneva. Switzerland. The following statement has been published by a number of cultural venues in Geneva on on September 8. As we observe a lack of critical engagement with the extension of the certificate requirement in German-speaking regions, we have translated this short but important statement.
We consider it a historical mistake to leave the critique on the measures to far-right, “patriotic” and esoteric circles.

Originally published by Barrikade Info. Translated by Riot Turtle.

The basis of our structures is to open to an audience without discrimination, without distinction of gender, race, class, whether they are good citizens or not, whether they come from Europe or not, whether they have identity papers or not, whether they have health insurance or not.

We are open spaces. It is not our task to exclude people because their situation does not allow them to access the Covid certificate, or for other administrative reasons. We don’t want to become control and sorting bodies, we don’t want to be the actors of a change towards a society where surveillance is becoming more and more general.

We fear that these exceptional measures will be permanent and that we will get used to a form of latent surveillance. We fear that the tools introduced today in the name of public health will be more easily used tomorrow for security reasons, that the indication of identity and the registration of movements will be standardized, that the meshes of social control will be dangerously tight during the management of this pandemic.

What we denounce has nothing to do with public health. We have always been committed to solidarity with the most vulnerable and have done everything possible to receive our visitors as safely as possible.
For us, the extension of the certificate is not a question of health or vaccination, but a question of social control that implies, among other things, the development of a large-scale data collection practice that we consider dangerous in the context of a society that for years has tended towards an ideal of security. And it is a burden placed on sectors that have already been severely damaged and systematically targeted since the beginning of the pandemic, with all the logistical, financial and organizational weight that this entails. Apart from the ethical aspect, the imposition of responsibility for a blackmail intended to encourage vaccination is an open mockery.

Today we want to express our resistance to the generalization of the Covid certificate and what it entails: Exclusion, surveillance, archiving and a policing function that is not the responsibility of cultural institutions.

We have played the game and respected the precautions – sometimes reaching the limits of absurdity – associated with the opening during the pandemic, anxious to take care of each other and not to be spaces of contagion. Today we want to express our resistance to the generalization of the Covid certificate and to what it entails: Exclusion, surveillance, fencing and a policing function that does not correspond to cultural institutions.

L’Ecurie / La Makhno / Le Rez / Le Spoutnik / Le TU / Le Zoo / 8.9.2021

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