A singer and pianist who makes her living performing on cruise ships is pleading with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to reverse his controversial policy barring cruises from requiring guests to show proof that they've been vaccinated against the novel coronavirus.
Writing in the Washington Post, Alissa Musto argues that the cruise industry will "never get back to normal" unless ships are allowed to ask for proof of vaccinations.
"I fear that this policy will drag down an industry that's already been treading water for 15 months," she writes. "Everyone who works on a cruise ship -- and, I'd bet, most passengers, too -- want to know that the people onboard with us don't pose an unnecessary risk to our health and safety. If cruise lines can't protect the safety of passengers and crew and make people feel confident about booking their vacations, we'll never get back to normal."
Musto then argues that cruise ships are already allowed to put their own employees through medical evaluations that include mandatory vaccinations as conditions of employment, which is why it seems a stretch to believe they cannot require the same of their guests.
"I just hope Florida's new policies won't stand in the way of my colleagues and me getting back to work -- and the lives we've had to put on hold for the past 15 months," she concludes.