An official announcement came on the reopening of around 8891 km United States-Canada border. The administration closed all nonessential travel at the border since March 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Moreover, the Canadian Minister of Public Safety & Emergency Preparedness, Bill Blair, announced the extension of the closure for another month on his official Twitter account on Friday.
Our number one priority as we fight #COVID19 is keeping Canadians safe. In coordination with the U.S., we are extending restrictions on non-essential international travel and with the United States until July 21st, 2021.
— Bill Blair (@BillBlair) June 18, 2021
Blair wrote that the Canadian administration is pleasing some measures for fully vaccinated Canadian nationals, permanent residents, and other people who want to enter Canada. He also said that his administration would provide additional details on Monday. Since then, the closure of the longest undefended boundary of the world renewed every month.
According to the United States State Department, before the COVID-19 pandemic, an average of four lac people crossed the U.S.-Canada border daily. Around two billion dollars per day trade made the same journey. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s administration announced that the reopening of the border would be gradual and depending on the restrictions.
Four Categories for Travelers to Cross the Border
Professor of global health at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Kelley Lee, expects that the administration will place people into four categories who are traveling for nonessential purposes. Lee further adds that it will look like they will go towards a system where they will place people into categories depending on their vaccination status.
According to Lee, there would partially vaccinate, fully vaccinated, non-vaccinated, and those people who previously infected with the virus, so they will have some coronavirus immunity in their bodies through recovery from natural infection. Furthermore, she says that the exclusive way to determine the traveler’s category easily would be checking a vaccine passport, which some see as objectionable while others see as cumbersome.
Lee said that she thinks that they possibly are the perfect way to go if they applied properly and executed in a way tied to risk analysis. So, fully vaccinated individuals don’t pose a risk for others, but the administration knows how o manage that risk, and to lower it, the administration can use those passports.
CEO and president of the Business Council of Canada, Goldy Hyder, said that as more individuals become inoculated, the pressure automatically builds on the administration to allow more people to travel. Hyder unlike the term “vaccine passport” because it has different meanings and would not be like a usual travel document. Moreover, he feels that implementing anything shouldn’t victimize those for whom getting inoculated poses health risks.
Any type of Definitive Reopening of Border is Welcome
Tourism is one industry that directly dependent on traditional passports, but the coronavirus pandemic hit it poorly. The CEO of the Tourism Industry Association of British Columbia, Walt Judas, says that any type of ultimate reopening of the border is welcome; even the officials gradually did the process. However, Judas says that this month-to-month leftover is really harmful.
Judas furthers says that several businesses either failed or on life support because of it. They cannot plan, they have to cancel their guests, they need to offer refunds. Furthermore, they really depend exclusively on international visitation. As of 11th June, the Canadian administration said just more than seventy percent of adults got at least one coronavirus vaccine dose, and a little over nine percent received full vaccination. The United States-Canada border has almost one hundred and seventeen legal crossing points.