Canada-US Border Closure Likely To Extend Through April

The Canada-US Border Closure likely to be extended until April 21st as coronavirus cases spike in some states, according to well-placed government sources. This extension of the closure of the Canada-U.S. border is to control the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Non-essential travel restrictions between Canada and the United States have been extended by another thirty (30) days – until Apr. 21.,” tweeted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on March 18 press briefing. “We will continue to do everything necessary to keep you and your loved ones safe.”

The widely-expected decision means the Canada-U.S border will have been closed for thirteen (13) months during the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic.

Currently, Canada’s international travel restrictions also expire on April 21 but are also expected to be extended.

Canadians Exempts From Travel Ban

Current exemptions to the travel ban include Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or persons registered as Indians under the Indian Act – but all of these individuals do need the documentation when arriving in Canada.

That documentation can include:

  • a Canadian passport;
  • proof of Canadian citizenship such as a citizenship card, citizenship certificate, or birth certificate;
  • Indian Status Certificate (status card);
  • Temporary Confirmation of Registration Documents (TCRD);
  • Canadian permanent resident card;
  • travel document (visa counterfoil);
  • visa-exempt foreign passport and IRCC Special Authorization for Canadian Citizens, or;
    documentation showing their relationship to an immediate family member, such as a marriage certificate; birth certificate; Confirmation of Permanent Residence for the family class or under the one-year window, and; other supporting documents showing connections with immediate family members.
  • Electronic copies of the documents listed above are acceptable.

Canada also has exemptions in place for the following people, provided they are traveling for non-discretionary reasons:

  • Seasonal agricultural workers, caregivers, fish/seafood worker, and all other temporary foreign workers;
  • International students who held a study permit, or had been approved for a study permit, when the travel restrictions took effect on March 18, 2020. More international students are now allowed to travel from October twenty (20) last year under a new exemption;
  • Permanent resident applicants who had been approved for permanent residence before the travel restrictions were announced but who had not yet traveled to Canada;
  • Immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents are also exempt if entering to be with an immediate family member for at least fifteen (15) days, and;
  • Extended family members of citizens and permanent residents, plus foreign nationals traveling on compassionate reasons.

Trudeau Says Too Early To Talk About Re-Opening Border

Only two weeks ago, Prime Minister expressed sympathy in a tweet for the problems Canadians face due to the travel ban and public health restrictions imposed to contain the spread of coronavirus.

“Like many of you, the premiers and I spent a lot of time on the phone and in virtual meetings – we have met twenty-eight (28) times over the past twelve (12) months,” he tweeted. “Our most recent meeting was today, and we took a moment to discuss on how COVID-19 pandemic has impacted Canadians.”

Growing frustration in Canada over Trudeau’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic and the national COVID-19 vaccine sent out caused him to dip in the polls in late Feb. The Angus Reid Institute reveals the prime minister’s popularity dropped five points from January to February.

According to a Canadian Press report, Trudeau said both Canadians and Americans would have to be patient until the COVID-19 global pandemic eased off and that it wasn’t yet time to even talk about re-opening the Canada-U.S. border.

Since then, support for the ruling Liberals has picked up as vaccines have begun to arrive and Canadians can be immunized. Ipsos polling data released in March indicates the Liberals up marginally to thirty-five (35) percent of public support compared to the Conservatives who only enjoy twenty-eight (28) percent support from the Canadian public.

Since February, all travelers coming to Canada by air for non-essential reasons needed to stay in government-designated hotels for three (3) days at their own costs after receiving a COVID-19 test.

U. S. President Joe Biden has also stated his government’s efforts are geared towards achieving a successful country-wide vaccination program.

In a national broadcast, President Joe Biden said the country’s vaccination efforts should allow Americans to gather together for small family barbecues for the July 4 weekend. Other U.S Statemen has also called for borders to be fully re-opened by July 4th.

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