The Canadian Travel and Tourism Roundtable suggests that the federal government focus on vaccination and testing to safeguard Canadians from COVID rather than “blanket, restrictive border and travel measures.”
According to a report, the group, which comprises representatives from airlines, airports, hotels, and chambers of commerce from across the nation, believes that halting travel and closing borders is not the solution.
“Travel bans and border restrictions are ineffective tools to halt Omicron as the variant has already taken hold in Canada,” the Roundtable said in a statement.
“Introducing additional and overly restrictive travel measures at this time is not rooted in science, does little to stop the spread of the Omicron variant in Canada, and creates an enormous amount of harm to an industry already on its knees.”
The Tourism Roundtable expressed that the Canadian tourism and travel sector has been working with the government to ensure the safety of Canadians and travelers to Canada over the last 20 months.
It explains that air travelers must be fully vaccinated and tested negative for COVID-19 before departure and checked a second time on arrival.
“Canada is the only country in the western world to test travelers twice,” the group stated.
“No other activity in Canada can claim this degree of scrutiny, and no other country in the Americas or Western Europe maintains this level of precaution.”
Roundtable members highlighted that they would continue to collaborate with the government to provide practical solutions to protect the public’s health and safety.
This includes increasing vaccination rates and booster campaigns as well as enhancing accessibility to rapid antigen tests.
“These common-sense measures will be incredibly helpful in protecting all Canadians against the most serious effects of COVID-19 and halting its spread,” the statement ended.