Israel’s COVID Happy Badge starts Wednesday. Here’s what you need to know

The Happy Badge was released after a meeting of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Economy Minister Orna Barbivay and several event hall owners last week and intends to reduce COVID-19 infection.

A bride and groom walk to their wedding in face masks amid the coronavirus pandemic (photo credit: REUTERS/SERTAC KAYAR)
A bride and groom walk to their wedding in face masks amid the coronavirus pandemic
(photo credit: REUTERS/SERTAC KAYAR)
 The Israeli government announced the “Happy Badge” last week, a new system aimed at reducing infection from large, indoor events.
The system goes into effect on Wednesday.
Explanation of the new "Happy Badge" coronavirus rules. (Credit: Health Ministry)Explanation of the new "Happy Badge" coronavirus rules. (Credit: Health Ministry)
Here are the details of the plan:
1 - Only those who are vaccinated, recovered or can present a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours can enter an event. There is no limit on the participation of those who meet this criteria.
2 - All event goers are required to wear masks, except for when carrying out activities that would make that difficult, such as eating or drinking.
3 - Only events that meet certain criteria require a Happy Badge. These include indoor events with more than 100 participants that include refreshments or involve mingling between guests, such as dancing.
4 - Examples of events that would require the Happy Badge are weddings and other celebrations, standing concerts, parties and conferences.
The Happy Badge was released after a meeting of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Economy Minister Orna Barbivay and several event hall owners last week.
“Our goal is not to prevent weddings and celebrations in the halls,” Bennett said then. “That would be the easiest and the most damaging because there will then be pirate weddings without oversight. Our goal is to define how to hold them in a time of pandemics, with minimal harm to the events sector and maximum protection for the citizens of Israel."