TORONTO — A report in the consumer media suggests the eased border restrictions between Canada and the U.S. will likely start in late July or August.
The Buffalo News says Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Dominic LeBlanc indicated that the federal government’s timeline could involve “a phased adjustment of border measures in July or later in August.”
The news follows on yesterday’s report that LeBlanc said Canadians can expect an announcement by or before Monday on easing pandemic travel restrictions at the border. LeBlanc stressed that the restrictions will be phased out slowly and cautiously and only so long as vaccination rates continue to climb and the number of COVID-19 cases in Canada continues to decline.
The next renewal date for the Canada-U.S. border closure, and Canada’s travel restrictions and requirements, is this Monday, June 21.
“Next week we’ll have more to say about measures that will be in place at both the land borders and the air arrivals at the four designated airports,” LeBlanc said on June 15.
The government has already said it will relax quarantine protocols in early July for fully vaccinated citizens who are eligible to return to Canada.
The Buffalo News also reported on a recent online forum hosted by Politico and focused on discussions about reopening the Canada-U.S. border, with officials from both sides weighing in.
New York’s Rep. Brian Higgins, one of the most vocal proponents for reopening the border as soon as possible, told the forum he was hoping for July 1.
Wayne Easter, MP for Malpeque, PEI, said that while he too was hoping for July, more realistically he sees a phased reopening with the biggest easing of restrictions coming in late July.
Laurie Trautman, director of the Border Policy Research Institute at the University of Western Washington, put her estimate at Labour Day (Sept. 6).
And Michigan Rep. Bill Huizenga, a co-chair of the Canada-U.S. Interparliamentary Group, said “Thanksgiving”.
Is that Canadian Thanksgiving, or U.S. Thanksgiving? The guessing game continues.