Mayors, lawmakers call for end of COVID-19 restrictions on Canada-US borders via open letter – Hamilton Pipa News

Mayors, lawmakers call for end of COVID-19 restrictions on Canada-US borders via open letter – Hamilton

The mayor of Niagara Falls, Ontario, says he continues to dream of an event in which the Canadian prime minister and Ontario’s premier cut a “huge ribbon” at the Canada-US border, signaling that Canada is a Once again open for business.

Jim Diodati, as suggested by several Canadian lawmakers and border-city mayors, publish another open letter to Ottawa, calling for an end to all remaining COVID-19 restrictions still on the northern border.

“It has been a long haul, especially in a border community that is particularly dependent on tourism,” Diodati told 900 CHML Bill Kelly Show.

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“Typically, 50 per cent of our revenue comes from the US, from our international travel. It really matters to us that we do the right things.”

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Diodati joined 22 municipal leaders, members of Congress and lawmakers this week in calling on the federal government to end COVID-19 testing requirements for people wishing to cross the border from the US into Canada.

The joint message argues that the lifting of restrictions will help the recovery from COVID and communities have the means to slow transmission rates among populations that have essentially allowed both countries to return to “normal daily life”.

“It’s a real common sense approach we’re dealing with right now,” Diodati said.

“We are hopeful. We are confident that by the end of September we are going to end these unnecessary border restrictions to enter the country.

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The staff report estimates that the city is still down about 50 percent for international travel compared to pre-pandemic numbers in 2018.


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In the same period, the Niagara region is estimated to have had tourism-related employment of around 40,000 people in the area.

The letter did not refer to Canada’s ArrivCan pre-screening app as an issue, but with limited exceptions, the software was still required for all passengers entering Canada by air, land, rail or seaplane. Is.

The online protocol requires passengers to submit information within 72 hours of arriving in the country or before boarding any cruise ship destined for Canada.

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Last month, Canada’s Minister of Public Safety Marco Mendicino fielded more than 1,500 emails stemming from a Canadian American Business Council campaign, “Travel Like It’s 2019,” which went live in early August.

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The online campaign is calling on Ottawa to scrap Arrivcan.

Federal Transport Minister Omar Alghbra remains firm with the app, saying it makes border crossing “more efficient”.


In late August, Anne Koutrakis, the parliamentary secretary to the transport minister, insisted that dropping Arrivcan would increase delays and bottlenecks and that removing the mask mandate would not reduce waiting times.

About 80 percent of Niagara Falls tourism revenue comes during the summer months.

According to Diodati, city employees have yet to tally tourism numbers for 2022, but they say the numbers have increased over the past two years due to conventions at the convention centre.

“So that business is back,” Diodati said.

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“I can tell you right now, this week, we’ve got the Ontario Construction Association, 2,000 representatives in the city throughout the week.”


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