No COVID-19 test needed for fully vaccinated Canadians entering the United States after November 8, lawmaker says – .

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No COVID-19 test needed for fully vaccinated Canadians entering the United States after November 8, lawmaker says – .


WASHINGTON – Fully vaccinated Canadians entering the United States through land borders on or after November 8 will not be required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test, a US lawmaker said in a statement on Saturday morning.

As the U.S. government prepares to fully reopen to travelers from Canada and around the world, information on exactly how and what will be needed has trickled in. Last week, the rules for air travelers – including proof of vaccination and the requirement for a recent negative COVID-19 test – were clarified.

On Friday, the US Department of Homeland Security posted an “information sheet” on its website on how the new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control will apply at land borders. Starting November 8, the guide says, travelers not considered “essential” entering the country by land or sea will need to provide full proof of vaccination – as they will when arriving by air.

There is a temporary exemption from the vaccine requirement for “essential” travelers who have already been cleared to cross for a long time – until January 2022.

Testing requirements are not directly addressed in the new fact sheet. Congressman Brian Higgins, who represents the border area around Buffalo, NY and chairs the Congressional Northern Border Caucus, said in a statement Saturday morning that officials confirmed to his office that such a requirement would not be made. implemented.

US Customs and Border Protection have confirmed to Congressman Higgins’ office that, unlike new air travel rules, vaccinated travelers entering the United States by land on or after November 8 will not be required to produce also a negative COVID test, ”the statement said. noted. A member of staff at Higgins’ office told The Star that this information has been “confirmed and reconfirmed” in several email exchanges with border officials, as it is one of the biggest open issues their office responded.

An inquiry with Customs and Border Protection and the Department of Homeland Security on testing requirements was not immediately responded to. A difference in the testing requirements at different types of entry points would not be unusual – air travelers currently allowed in and out of the United States have long faced a testing requirement that is officially administered by the airlines. air, while such a requirement did not exist for those authorized to cross land borders. Experts who have spoken to The Star in recent weeks have speculated that while US officials have handed the logistics of police test results over to airlines, they probably don’t want to place the same burden on border officials. terrestrial.

Canadians traveling to the United States by any form of transportation, however, will continue to face a testing requirement to re-enter Canada – the Canadian government requires proof of a negative PCR or molecular test taken within 72 hours following the time of entry. Bill Blair, until recently Minister of Public Safety, said this requirement should remain in place until the United States reopens, although it may be reconsidered in time depending on public health guidelines.

Previous new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control that was announced with the rules for air travelers clarified that children under the age of 18 would be exempt from the new vaccine requirements and that the U.S. government would recognize vaccines available in Canada, including “mixed dose vaccines” versions that approximately 4 million Canadians have received.

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