Canada and the U.S. will close the border in an effort to slow the novel coronavirus
In an attempt to stop further spread of the novel coronavirus, President Trump announced this morning that the border between the United States and Canada would temporarily close to non-essential traffic. It’s only the latest drastic move aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.
“We will be, by mutual consent, temporarily closing our Northern Border with Canada to non-essential traffic. Trade will not be affected, Details to follow!” Trump tweeted this morning.
Reports emerged last night that the two countries were working toward a deal. Sources tell CBC News that the border closure should halt shoppers and tourists but that Canadians would be allowed to return home. The deal is also expected to allow commercial traffic in order to keep supply chains intact.
Yesterday, Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freedland discussed at a press conference the potentially devastating effects of closing the border. “Nearly 200,000 people cross that border every day and that border and that traffic that goes across that border is literally a lifeline for both the Canadians and the Americans on both sides of that border,” she says.
“We get our groceries thanks to truckers who drive back and forth across that border. Very urgently needed medical supplies and medicines go back and forth across that border,” she said. “And essential workers go back and forth across that border every day.”
“So it is a unique relationship for Canada and it’s important for us in handling our situation on the border to be sure that we act to get things right,” she explains.
The novel coronavirus has already touched Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s family as his wife, Sophie, tested positive for the illness last week. She’s been self-isolating at home along with Trudeau and her symptoms have since subsided, according to a statement.
Social distancing is the tactic being used in the United States, Canada, and the rest of the world in an attempt to slow the spread of the virus in the hopes of not overwhelming hospital systems with thousands of sick people at once. Good hand-washing is important, but right now, the best thing people can do to is stay home and only go out in public if it’s absolutely necessary. As of yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control reports that the U.S. has 4,226 cases and 75 deaths. Cases worldwide have topped 200,000.
Information about COVID-19 is rapidly changing, and Scary Mommy is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. With news being updated so frequently, some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For this reason, we are encouraging readers to use online resources from local public health departments, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization to remain as informed as possible.