Schumer, Higgins confirm reopening of Canadian border

Border Report Tour

WASHINGTON (WFFF/WIVB) — The U.S. will reopen its land border to vaccinated Canadians in November. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York said he has confirmation from the Department of Homeland Security that the U.S.-Canadian border will reopen to nonessential vaccinated travelers by early November.

Canada opened its border to vaccinated U.S. travelers in August, more than a year and a half after the COVID-19 pandemic forced its closure. Since then, lawmakers in many northern border states have lobbied the White House to take similar action.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul praised the announcement in a statement. “From Western New York to the North Country, I look forward to welcoming our Canadian neighbors back to New York as we continue to rebuild and recover from this pandemic,” she said.

U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins (NY-26), who has been pushing for the reopening of the border, announced the news on Twitter Tuesday night, saying more details would follow.

“A robust cross-border exchange between the United States and Canada is fundamental to our binational relationship and mutually beneficial to our nations’ citizens, businesses, and economies. Strong vaccination rates in Canada made the continued border shutdown absurd and unjustifiable,” Higgins said in a statement.

Higgins says that for months, he’s heard from businesses and families suffering due to the separation from the ongoing border shutdown: “The sigh of relief coming from Northern Border communities following this announcement is so loud it can practically be heard on either end of the Peace Bridge,” Higgins said. “Border communities await further details from the administration with great expectation, and I will continue to advocate for a more fully and freely open border to both governments, sooner rather than later.”

Rep. Higgins spoke about the news on Wednesday morning:

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