Ontario asking feds for three-day hotel quarantine at land border crossings

Premier Ford demands closure of Mississauga's Pearson Airport, fears vaccine resistant variant is inevitable

Trudeau added that Ontario was also seeking to suspend the arrival of worldwide students in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 and said Ottawa was working with the province on the issue.

"With several land border crossings between the United States and the Province of Ontario, this loophole represents a significant threat to the health and well-being of Ontarians due to the potential for further entry of COVID-19 variants into the province", the letter, which was signed by Solicitor General Sylvia Jones and Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott.

The Ford government's sick leave program, which will give employees three days of paid emergency leave during COVID-19, passed the legislature Thursday.

Ford is asking the federal government to suspend the arrival of worldwide students into Ontario for the time being.

"It's not just about foreign students coming here, it's about have two sets of rules that the federal government's put down", Ford said. He says no other province has made the same request.

"Because at this time Ontario is the only province requesting this, we're happy to work more narrowly with them", Trudeau said.

"As long as you can fly to Buffalo, take a taxi or limo to the US border and walk across to Canada to avoid having to quarantine in a hotel".

"Many provinces feel that they're doing a good job of managing these students, and that they're not a huge source of cases", Trudeau said.

The premier also called Friday on the federal government to institute hotel quarantines for those crossing into Canada at land borders.

"While returning, global air travelers are required to quarantine at a federally designated hotel, it has become evident that individuals are able to bypass this requirement", they wrote.

The province asked for mandatory pre-departure PCR testing for all domestic air travellers entering Ontario, an extension to current rules for worldwide passengers seeking entry into Canada.

He added that the importation of COVID-19 through the border is "extremely low" in Canada and the third wave is very much related "community transmission".

As it stands now, air travellers entering Canada are required to quarantine for at least three days in a specially designated hotel.

Meanwhile, Ford said he will not relent in his campaign to further restrict worldwide travel "because too much is at stake".

"I would shut down the land border crossings to only those who are absolutely essential", he said.

Ontario, in particular, has been struggling with a new wave of infections led by variants, prompting Ottawa to dispatch soldiers this week to hospitals to help care for a record number of critical Covid patients.

Quebec reported 1,041 new COVID-19 cases Friday and 13 more deaths.

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