Cloverdale-Langley City MP Tamara Jansen didn’t get the answers she was looking for when she pressed Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland to say what percentage of Canadians would need to be vaccinated for the border to reopen.
During a March 11 federal finance committee videoconference meeting, Jansen, whose sister is a travel agent, said people in that industry “are barely hanging on and they’re desperate for a concrete plan.”
Would the border reopen once 50 per cent, or 75 per cent, of Canadians have been vaccinated? Jansen asked.
Freeland replied that “when it comes to the border and travel, our priority is, and needs to be, protecting the safety and health of Canadians,” adding Canada’s border policy “is guided by science and Canadian borders will be reopened when it is safe for them to be reopened.”
Afterwards, Jansen said the minister was “unable to explain the criteria that the government will use to decide when the border will reopen, which is vital for these industries.”
“The travel, tourism and hospitality industries have been the hardest-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Jansen commented.
“The vast majority of workers in these industries are women, and though the government recently announced a task force on women in the economy, women who work and own businesses in these industries have been calling on the government for support for a year now.
Jansen described much of the federal economic stimulus as “mistargeted,” allowing hardest-hit industries to fall through the cracks.
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