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New AFLDS Issue Brief Offers Science-Based Advice to Revive US Cruise Industry

Vacationing Americans can travel aboard ships safely again, document argues

Los Angeles, CA – America’s Frontline Doctors (AFLDS) today released their latest Issue Brief, “Don’t Keel-haul the Cruise Lines: How Americans Can Sail Again,” which identifies a key US travel-and-leisure industry hit hard by pandemic-related restrictions and how to revive it. The Issue Brief is available here.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lifted its no-sail order on the US cruise industry in late October 2020. What remains is 40 pages of rules and guidance that fail to square with the realities of the tourism and leisure industry in a post-pandemic world. While the CDC promised to clarify its cruise-line protocols, the domestic industry is falling behind some international competitors, who have been offering trips to customers since July 2020. The Issue Brief recommends two key actions for policymakers. First, the CDC and related public health agencies must deliver clear and commonsense information to US cruise lines. Dozens of pages of opaque guidance on “simulated voyages” and other unworkable instructions will bankrupt the industry and eliminate the thousands of adjunct jobs in car-rental services and restaurants cruise-ship travel supports. Next, proposals to arbitrage the federal approval process by embracing so-called “vaccine passports” and other commercial mandates should be prohibited by law.

“Cruise lines are a $53 billion-a-year industry supporting more than 421,000 US jobs. The CDC has yet to update its conditional sailing guidelines for the cruise industry, suggesting the framework may stay in place until its expiration on November 1. This is untenable,” said AFLDS. “We are therefore calling on policymakers and public health experts at the federal level to provide certainty to the US cruise industry well before the current sailing guidelines expire. At the same time, restarting cruises to and from domestic ports must not depend on COVID-19 vaccine mandates of any kind for passengers and crews. To be sure, Americans can set sail again, safely and comfortably, without leaving the Constitution and its civil liberties behind.

”Read the new AFLDS Issue Brief, “Don’t Keel-haul the Cruise Lines: How Americans Can Sail Again,” on their website here.

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