Canadians separated by border restrictions allowed to reunite with immediate family members

Jun 8 2020, 9:18 am

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a limited exemption allowing families in Canada to reunite with their loved ones who have not been able to enter the country from the US due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Monday, the prime minister noted that Canadians have been separate from family members due to the US border closures that have been in place to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

“We obviously want families to be together, but our priority is the safety of all Canadians,” Trudeau said during his daily press conference outside of Rideau Cottage.

However, the federal government is now allowing a limited exemption for the immediate family of citizens or permanent residents of Canada to enter the country. The individuals allowed in will mainly be spouses, children, and parents of minor children.

“But let’s be absolutely clear,” Trudeau said, “anyone entering will need to self-isolate for 14 days.”

The prime minister acknowledged that “it’s an incredibly difficult time to be apart.”

“We hear that, which is why we’re allowing this limited exemption.”

On its website, the Canada Border Services Agency announced that “as of June 8, 2020 23:59 EDT, foreign nationals who are immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents, and who do not have COVID-19 or exhibit any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, or who do not have reason to believe they have COVID-19, will be exempt from the prohibition on entry to Canada if entering to be with an immediate family member for a period of at least 15 days.”

The temporary restriction on all discretionary/optional travel at the Canada-US border put in place on March 21 continues. This restriction is in place until at least June 21, 2020.

Trudeau added that Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Marco Mendicino will have more details on the exemption later on Monday.

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