United States: Democratic member of Congress proposes unilateral opening of the border to Canadians

Disappointed with the federal government, which has once again delayed the opening of the US border, an elected Democrat from New York state simply cannot take it any further and propose to the White House a unilateral reopening of the border for them, Canadians.

• Read also: Two neighboring towns are anxiously awaiting the reopening of the Canada-US border

“When the borders close in the middle of a tourist season for the second year in a row, it hurts both Canadians and Americans,” Brian Higgins said in an interview with CTV News on Sunday.

The latter deplores the fact that there is no information on the plan to reopen the border, the Canadian government is content with the assertion that it is “doing everything in its power” to allow the border to gradually reopen.

Federal Public Safety Minister Bill Blair announced on his Twitter account Friday that the Canada-US border and restrictions on international travel have been extended until July 21. Justin Trudeau said later in the day that Canada must meet the threshold of 75% of the population who have received a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 20% of those who will be fully vaccinated before the measures are relaxed, a stage reached so far over the weekend.

“With the NHL getting an unscientific or data-based travel waiver, it’s a slap in the face for families who have been separated for 15 months, for people who haven’t been able to visit, enjoy and maintain their property over the past 15 months, and that’s not good,” Higgins said of US-Canadian Relations.

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Too much pressure on Trudeau

The American-elect is not the only one pressing the Canadian government to reopen the border. On June 2, Federal Liberals Nathaniel Erskine Smith and Wayne Esther joined forces to pressure their leader to reopen the border.

“It is time for our governments to listen to the experts and share with them a fact-based plan to reunite families, resume normal border operations and restore our interconnected economies,” the three elected said in a joint letter.

Shopify president Harley Finkelstein shared her thoughts on the situation on Twitter on Thursday. “This is a wrong decision. The implications for Canada are enormous. We must immediately open the borders to fully vaccinated travelers.”

Canadian Business Council President and CEO Goldie Haider said the extension was “extremely disappointing” and shows a lack of preparation.

“We knew that the day would come when more and more people would be vaccinated and would like to know the benefits of that vaccination,” he said in an interview with CTV. “The use of phrases like ‘we are working’ is of great concern, and erodes public and business trust,” he added.

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