Federal authorities have fined individuals breaking COVID-19 travel laws a combined worth of $2,964,000 to date.
According to Blacklock’s Reporter, an Inquiry of Ministry in the House of Commons reveals that 988 air passengers received tickets worth $3,000 for simply “refusing to go to government-approved accommodation” such as quarantine hotels when arriving in Canada. All of the tickets issued had to do with offences contained under the Quarantine Act.
A majority of the tickets were given out at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport (621) but tickets were also issued at the airports in Vancouver (194) and Montreal (173).
Other tickets issued include fines for forged COVID-19 tests. According to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), 62 people were found to have attempted to use forged COVID-19 tests, but only four tickets were issued totalling $3,000 each.
Additionally, the CBSA reported that 9,003 individuals were ticketed for not having proof of a valid test. Of those, 4,583 arrived by land and 4,420 arrived into Canada by air.
“This would include individuals who did not test at all, who were in possession of tests outside the required 72-hour time frame, tests that did not originate from the required country of origin, tests that are suspected fraudulent and other reasons,” the document claims.
The report also notes that the price tag on enforcement and “exact breakdown of costs” could not be publicly disclosed at the time.
Renewed attention has been paid to the federal quarantine program as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and senior members of his cabinet travel to the UK to meet other foreign dignitaries for a G7 summit.
Conservatives have called on the prime minister to follow his own rules and stay in a government hotel like all Canadians are required to by law.
According to recent reports, Trudeau and his team will have a hotel specially prepared for the prime minister for his mandatory two-week quarantine period.