Canada moving forward with cross-border vaccine mandate for truckers

January 11, 2022

Mark Schremmer

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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he is moving ahead with a mandate that will require truck drivers to be fully vaccinated before crossing into Canada.

Canada plans to begin denying unvaccinated truck drivers entry after Jan. 15.

The Public Health Agency of Canada originally announced the rule in November.

“After Jan. 15, 2022, unvaccinated or partially vaccinated foreign nationals will only be allowed to enter Canada if they meet the criteria for limited exceptions, which apply to certain groups, such as agricultural and food processing workers, marine crew members, those entering on compassionate grounds, new permanent residents, resettling refugees and some children under the age of 18,” the Public Health Agency of Canada wrote in a news release. “Exempt unvaccinated travelers will continue to be subject to testing, quarantine, and other entry requirements. Nonexempt unvaccinated or partially vaccinated foreign nationals will be prohibited entry into Canada.”

The United States also is expected to implement a similar mandate on cross-border truckers beginning Jan. 22.

Since the announcement, there has been considerable pushback against the rule. The Canadian Trucking Alliance said that “hasty implementation could spell even more trouble for the North American supply chain.” In December, Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., and 13 other senators wrote to President Joe Biden asking for the United States and Canada to establish a reciprocal policy for cross-border truckers that does not include a vaccine mandate.

However, Reuters reported on Jan. 9 that Canada plans to move forward with its mandate.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance claimed in a statement that the mandate could force the loss of 12,000 to 16,000 cross-border truck drivers.

CDC warning

Earlier this week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. State Department issued a Do Not Travel advisory for Canada, because of the number of COVID-19 cases.

The level 4 notice indicates “a very high level of COVID-19 in the country,” the CDC wrote. “Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorized vaccine.” LL

Mark Schremmer, senior editor, joined Land Line in 2015. An award-winning journalist and former assistant news editor at The Topeka Capital-Journal, he brings fresh ideas, solid reporting skills, and more than two decades of journalism experience to our staff.