US extends closure of Canadian border through August 21; Higgins responds

Canada

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Congressman Brian Higgins, a long-time proponent of reopening the U.S.-Canada border to non-essential travel, is not happy with America’s decision to keep the door shut even longer than our Canadian neighbors.

It was announced on Wednesday morning that despite Canada allowing Americans to go there for non-essential travel starting August 9, the United States still will not allow non-essential travel from Canada through August 21.

MORE | Read the notice here.

Higgins, who co-leads the Northern Border Caucus and Canada-U.S. Interparliamentary Group, says “It is time for the United States to align its Northern Border policy with its science.”

MORE | Canada to let vaccinated US citizens enter country on Aug. 9

He released a statement in response to the decision, saying the longer closure “harms economic recovery and hurts families all across America’s northern border.”

Read the full statement here:

“For months now people and businesses along the border have been strung along month after month holding out hope for the border to reopen. Today’s decision by the Biden administration harms economic recovery and hurts families all across America’s northern border; this is completely unnecessary.

“While the United States does nothing, loved ones remain separated and communities whose economies rely on the cross-border exchange continue to suffer economically. Continuation of this shutdown is illogical given the success of vaccines and counterproductive putting the United States at a disadvantage given Canada’s decision to welcome back vaccinated Americans effective August 9th.”

Rep. Brian Higgins

United States Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said this move by the United States is jeopardizing the recovery for “thousands of businesses, families, and communities across Upstate New York.”

“As Canada prepares to further open the border next month, the United States is failing to reciprocate, jeopardizing an already tenuous recovery for thousands of businesses, families, and communities across Upstate New York.  It is critical for the United States to level the playing field and create a uniform system, following the science and data, to safely – and finally— reopen the border for those vaccinated, and I will do everything in my power to ensure that happens as swiftly as possible.”

U.S. Senate Marojity Leader Chuck Schumer

Evan Anstey is an Associated Press Award and Emmy-nominated digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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