Canada-U.S. border restrictions extended to July 21

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Published June 18, 2021 at 9:57 pm

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The hard targets for Canada with regard to possibly lifting U.S. border restrictions are 75 and 20 per cent.

On Friday, Public Safety Minister Bill Blair announced that the current U.S. land border measures would remain in place until July 21 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Commerce and trade, as well as the movement of vital health-care workers, are exempt from the now 15-month-old restrictions.

“We’re not out of this pandemic yet, we’re still seeing cases across the country and we want to get them down,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in Ottawa on Friday. “At the same time, we also know we have to hit our targets of 75 per cent vaccinated with the first dose, at least 20 per cent vaccinated with the second dose before we can start loosening things up because even a fully vaccinated individual can pass on COVID-19 to someone who is not vaccinated.” 

Blair also noted that the government will provide further details on Monday about its phased approach to easing restrictions for fully vaccinated individuals.

The prime minister was alluding to national COVID-19 vaccination numbers.

Peel Region is likely to get a large portion of an incoming influx of 11 million of Moderna vaccines. Trudeau said Friday that Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12.

Here is how Mississauga, Brampton, Hamilton, Halton Region and Niagara Region are faring with reaching those targets:

Friday, Trudeau said the government is taking a two-tracked approach to develop a vaccine documentation framework. There were media reports on Thursday of fully vaccinated Canadians being refused entry to places in the United States if their first dose was of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Vaccaine.

“First of all, in the initial phase, we’re going to be working with the AriveCAN app in ways that people an image of their paper proof of vaccination or online proof of vaccination so that the border agents on their return to Canada can verify indeed that they are fully vaccinated,” Trudeau said.

Trudeau added the government is working with the provinces on a “national certification of vaccination status” that he assures will be accepted globally.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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