"It is clear that the next step must be some unilateral action by the U.S. perhaps focused on the modest expansion of categories of allowed Canadian entry to include property and boat owners, access to U.S. airports, added business travel, and of course connections within families tragically divided by the wall which has been erected on our northern border for fifteen months now," Douglas said.
U.S. Representatives Elise Stefanik and Brian Higgins have previously called for a unilateral reopening of the border.
Even as the border between the United States and Canada abruptly shut 15 months ago, essential goods continue to flow.
Now, even that is threatened, along with the push to permit fully vaccinated Americans to enter Canada, as thousands of Canadian Border Service Agency workers prepare for strike votes starting next week.
But the stumbling block appears to be Canada's relatively low vaccination rate. While 43.85 percent of U.S. citizens are fully vaccinated, the figure was just 12.22 percent in Canada, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.
Trudeau said in published remarks that Canada needs to have more of its citizens vaccinated before the border can reopen. The border has been closed since March 2020, at the start of the pandemic. The latest extension of the border closing expires June 21.
This would be the second summer that the land border is closed to leisure travelers. Canadians have been able to fly into the U.S., although U.S. citizens don't have the same privilege in Canada.
Canada recently eased quarantine requirements on Canadian citizens returning to Canada, a step that didn't help those from the U.S. or other countries.aside">