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Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence

Representing the 14th District of Michigan

U.S. Rep. Lawrence Leads Michigan Democratic Letter to President Biden on COVID Restrictions at Northern Border

February 5, 2021
Press Release

Washington, DC - U.S. Representatives Brenda L. Lawrence (MI-14) and Andy Levin (MI-09) and Michigan House Democrats led a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to ease travel restrictions at the Northern Border for Michigan and Canadian families. The letter follows President Biden’s Executive Order on Promoting COVID-19 Safety in Domestic and International Travel. The letter was joined by Reps. Haley Stevens (MI-11) and Rashida Tlaib (MI-13).

“On June 8, 2020, Canada graciously extended the first exemption to their border travel restrictions, granting those who are immediate family members the right to cross into Canada, and on October 8, 2020, they established a second set of exemptions for extended family members. However, the Trump Administration did not reciprocate those exemptions, prohibiting certain Canadian travelers from crossing into the United States by land,” the Members wrote. “As a first step, we urge the Department of Homeland Security to reciprocate those exemptions and allow for Canadians to visit immediate and extended family in the United States, as well as provide them the opportunity to care for loved ones who may be ill, attend funeral and memorial services, and more.”

The Members emphasized, “It is important to note that in any proposed policy, all family travel exemptions should and must remain in line with federal, state, and local COVID-19 health guidelines and quarantine procedures. We want to be clear that these exemptions should not come at the expense of public health; our top priority must remain limiting the spread of COVID-19. However, we believe that reciprocating these family travel exemptions are an important first step toward fully reopening our borders in a safe manner.”

A copy of the letter is found PDF iconhere