OTTAWA — The ban on non-essential crossings of the Canada-U.S. border is being loosened slightly to allow some families to reunite, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Monday.
Rules still require anyone entering the country to self-isolate for two weeks to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.
“I want to be clear, though,” Trudeau said. “Anyone entering the country will be required to quarantine for 14 days. If you don’t follow these rules, you could face serious penalties.”
The border with the United States has been closed to all non-essential traffic since March, except for goods and certain categories of essential workers.
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Canadians always have a right to return to this country from abroad, but some families have been divided because of some of their members’ citizenship status.
“This is an incredibly difficult time to be apart from a spouse, a child, or mom and dad,” Trudeau said. “We hear that. That’s why we’re bringing in a limited exemption to allow immediate family members of citizens or permanent residents to come to Canada.”
More details are expected to be released later on Monday, but the measure is aimed at families with unusual circumstances, such as when one parent is not a citizen, Trudeau explained.
The current agreement with the United States expires June 21, but it has been extended twice already for a month at a time.