U.S. land border will not be opening to Canadians as soon as expected
Canadians and Americans were understandably thrilled to learn of the recent news that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is opening the border for non-essential travel in the coming weeks, starting first by permitting our neighbours to the south — if they are fully vaccinated — to come back into the country for leisure purposes starting Aug. 9.
Unfortunately for us in the Great White North, it doesn't appear that the U.S. intends to reciprocate the gesture.
President Joe Biden and his team are extending current measures at land and water crossings until at least Aug. 21, it was revealed on Wednesday, with their Department of Homeland Security stating that the threat of transmission of COVID-19 between the two countries still presents "specific threat to human life or national interests."
"DHS is in constant contact with Canadian and Mexican counterparts to identify the conditions under which restrictions may be eased safely and sustainably," the body wrote on Twitter late Wednesday morning after confirming the news, which had broken through a pre-published U.S. Federal Register document earlier in the day.
DHS is in constant contact with Canadian and Mexican counterparts to identify the conditions under which restrictions may be eased safely and sustainably.— Homeland Security (@DHSgov) July 21, 2021
Many have been quick to decry the decision, citing the fact that there are tons of travellers continuing to arrive from international destinations by air, and also noting the fact that the Canadian side of the border will be opening to our American pals sooner.
Canadians have long been able to travel to into the U.S. by air fairly restriction-free, with the criteria of a negative COVID-19 test only added at the end of January of this year.
The more stringent restrictions on non-essential travel from Canada and Mexico into the U.S. via land and ferry was set to expire later today, and some American politicians are already expressing their anger at the decision to extend them.
It’s not overly surprising, given the numbers in the US and the alarming number of “breakthrough” cases we are hearing about. Both borders should be opening at the same time. I hope @CanadianPM @JustinTrudeau adjusts our timeline.— James M (@jsmyyz) July 21, 2021
Canada, meanwhile, will continue with its plan to open the border to all fully inoculated Americans next month, and all vaxxed travellers from any international destination starting Sept. 7.
Canadian citizens and permanent residents who have both doses of a recognized COVID-19 vaccine have also been able to travel without facing the controversial mandatory hotel quarantine (or any quarantine at all) since July 5.
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