WASHINGTON D.C. [10/13/21]—U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) said the Biden Administration plans to lift Canadian land-border restrictions in November is good news for Northern Minnesota businesses and communities that depend on Canadian travelers to thrive.
The announcement comes two weeks after Sen. Smith pressed both Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to end the restrictions on non-essential land travel from Canada to the United States because the restrictions have had a catastrophic economic impact on northern border communities. The Senator said the restrictions have also created confusion because despite the land-border restrictions, Canadians have been able to travel by air to the United States for several months. Canada has allowed vaccinated Americans to enter over the land border for non-essential travel since August.
“Lifting of the restrictions on Canadian land travel to the United State could not have come soon enough for many Northern border communities and businesses that have been devastated by the steep drop in Canadian travelers,” said Sen. Smith. “We know the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe has seen its revenues down 70 to 80% below average with the restrictions in place, and many others have been hard hit by the restrictions. This has been a very difficult time for these communities and I hope we will see them recover in the months ahead after the restrictions are ended.”