Increased Powers of Public Health Officials Meant to Mitigate Risks of COVID-19 at the Border

The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) reached out to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to obtain clarity on the types of questions border or health officials could ask truck drivers entering the country, as the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) gained increased powers to ask for personal information, at the Canada-U.S. border through an Order in Council (OIC) on June 29.

CBSA has stated that PHAC officials, like CBSA officers, are not restricted to any specific questioning and that questions from public health officials at the border are solely intended to identify the potential public health risk and how it could be best managed. Truck drivers could be asked to provide personal information, such as their contact info, to public health officials.

As with any border crossing, truck drivers can still expect to be questioned about their recent travel, whether they are symptomatic, or have recently come into contact with someone who has contracted the virus.

CTA encourages its members to make their drivers aware additional questioning can be expected when entering Canada from the United States until August 31, which is the date the OIC is repealed. Although there are no current plans to extend the OIC beyond this date, the situation at the border continues to be fluid, and CTA will update members on any additional details as they become available.

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