Congressman Higgins presses for northern border reopening plan


(WIVB) — Buffalo Congressman Brian Higgins continues to urge the United States and Canadian governments to reopen the border or at the very least, develop a plan and release it to the public. For the past 16 months, neither has happened.

The border’s been closed to non-essential travel for 16 months with no plans to reopen has been released to the public. And another deadline is looming, with the border to be closed at least until one week from Wednesday.

During an event Wednesday, Higgins pointed to the ironies involved in continuing to keep the border closed off for non-essential travel. He says both the U.S. and Canadian governments have been urging their respective populations to follow the science when it comes to controlling the spread of COVID-19.

But he says leaders in both countries are refusing to follow their own advice when it comes to the border. And he pointed to recent decisions about allowing professional athletes to cross unabated — for the NHL playoffs and eventually for the Toronto Blue Jays.

He says those decisions go beyond ironic. He says they’re arbitrary.

“When you make arbitrary decisions about exempting hockey players, it’s not based on the science. It’s based on the NHL playoff schedule. When you’re considering allowing baseball players to go back to Toronto after playing the season in Buffalo, that is an arbitrary decision. That is not following the science,” said Congressman Higgins.

Higgins says vaccination rates in Canada aren’t as high as what we’re seeing in the U.S.

He says they’ve made dramatic strides during the past month.

Dave Greber is an award-winning anchor and reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here.

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