Residents of Stewart, B.C. and Hyder, Alaska can now cross the border without the COVID-19 restrictions imposed at other border crossing.
Late Friday, Bill Blair, Canada’s minister of public safety, made the announcement for Stewart as well as two other remote communities, one in New Brunswick and one in Minnesota.
Under the new rules residents of the communities will be allowed to enter the other country without observing the mandatory 14-day quarantine period for the purposes of obtaining the necessities of life such as food and medical services.
Children will also be allowed to attend school.”
“The limited and practical changes will continue to protect Canadians’ health and safety while removing hardships for children and for residents in remote communities impacted by the border restrictions.”
In a Facebook post, Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Taylor Bachrach applauded the exemption.
“Long overdue, this was an important and necessary step for residents in this remote part of the world to maintain their quality of life,” he said, adding he still supports keeping the rest of the Canadian border closed.
Residents and local officials in Stewart and Hyder, which are effectively a trans-border community, have been asking for the change since the border was shut down March 21.
Campobello Island, New Brunswick and Northwest Angle, Minnesota will also benefit from the relaxed rules.