the problem: The letter is based on a campaign by Washington state lawmakers and Governor Jay Inslee to pressure Ottawa to be more serious about its calls for border crossings. The restrictions have been in place since March and have been extended for 30 days since then, with a few new exceptions to the definition of “primary” travel.
Point Roberts and Northwest Angle are geographically separated from the rest of the United States, which means that residents must pass through two border checkpoints to return to the United States. With this geographical isolation often comes long distances to groceries and medical appointments, and some have reported trying to cross with family members only to get CSA officers to reject travel companions.
Legislators wrote that Americans living in Northwest Angel, Minnesota, can only travel to the rest of the United States by open water if denied entry to Canada at the land border, creating a “logistical and safety hazard that has damaged businesses and prevents Americans from visiting family.” Or the homes they own. “
DelBene and Peterson reiterated these residents’ argument: that CBSA officers could easily verify their unique status as exclave residents.
“Individuals who live in or travel to Point Roberts and NW Angle can be identified through driver’s licenses, leases, or property documents,” they wrote. “There are many options that would allow Americans to access these isolated geographical points without any risk of exposure to Canadian residents.”
What then: The current border restrictions expire on September 22 and are widely expected to be extended again in some capacities.