Aug 14, 2020

Canada-USA Border Closure Continues to Cause Tension

Kristin Kerr

s summer nears an end and people are still itching to travel, unfortunately, COVID-19 continues to halt plans for most. Public Safety Minister Bill Blair announced Friday that the federal government will keep the border closure in place until at least Sept. 21.

Border closure

The extension of the border closure comes as no surprise, given our current environment. As both Canada and the U.S. are still working to stop the spread of COVID-19, the current extension of the border closure expires on Aug. 21. Closures began in March and have been extended on a monthly basis as the COVID-19 situation evolves. Restrictions on non-essential travel now remain in place until at least Sept. 21. Although the situation is not ideal for most, taking such measures is a must in times like these to keep our communities safe.


Tension at the Canada border

Closing of the borders does come with its exceptions; however, non-essential travel is not encouraged. The closure exempts the flow of trade and commerce, as well as temporary foreign workers and vital health-care workers such as nurses who live and work on opposite sides of the border.

Sadly, there are always rule breakers and this time is no different. Several U.S. citizens have visited Canada via air/car, and must legally quarantine upon arrival. It’s also no surprise that these visits have led to numerous unfortunate instances of confrontations and tension between locals and visitors with U.S. license plates. Many Americans have reported being harassed and having their vehicles vandalized, even if they have a right to be in Canada.


Being a good Neighbour

Yes, the borders are closed and yes, there are certain states/provinces with higher spikes in cases, but we need to stand strong and fight together. Just because someone is driving a U.S. vehicle doesn’t make them a bad person or mean they have COVID-19. We are all in an uncertain time right now, and we shouldn’t have to fear driving our car in certain parts of our country because we may get dirty looks, shouted at, or have our cars vandalized.

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