Those who illegally cross the border into Canada are not being quarantined, despite assurances to the contrary by Public Safety Minister Bill Blair, according to the head of the union representing CBSA officers.
Customs and Immigration Union president Jean-Pierre Fortin told the Montreal Gazette that as of Tuesday morning asylum seekers were not being subjected to mandatory quarantine.
Blair said yesterday that Canada would continue to accept asylum claimants despite closing the border to non-citizens, though he assured they’d be placed in dedicated quarantine facilities for 14 days.
“The measures that are currently in place is that those individuals are immediately taken into custody by the RCMP, they are screened thoroughly by our border officers. This process takes about 24 hours and they are now also being screened for any evidence of symptoms and questioned about where they have been,” said Blair.
“Because of the need for the 14-day isolation, we are now making separate arrangements for those individuals to be placed in appropriate shelters in order to accommodate the requirement for the period of isolation.”
As exclusively reported by True North, the RCMP “emphatically” informed activists who were aiding illegal border crossers into Canada that the crossings would continue, even before the government announced the border closure.
Wednesday morning, the US and Canadian governments announced that they would be suspending “non-essential” travel across the border to curb the spread of COVID-19.