U.S. to require vaccines for all border crossers from January 2022
Beginning on January 22, 2022, US President Joe Biden has stated that critical nonresident passengers crossing US land borders, such as truck drivers, government, and emergency response officials, will be required to be completely vaccinated.
The requirement, which the White House previewed in October, brings the restrictions for essential passengers in line with those that went into effect earlier this month for leisure visitors when the US reopened its borders to fully vaccinated persons, according to a senior administration official.
According to the government, all essential ferry passengers must be properly vaccinated by the same day.
The new rules apply to non-U.S. nationals, as American citizens and permanent residents are still allowed to enter the country regardless of their vaccination status, but they will be subjected to additional testing because officials believe they will easily contract and spread COVID-19, so they will be delayed in order to encourage them to get vaccinated.
To avoid inconveniences, the Biden administration put back the requirement for essential passengers by more than two months from when it went into force on Nov. 8 for non-essential visits. This is especially true for truck drivers, who are vital to North American commerce. Despite the fact that most cross-border traffic was shut down in the early days of the pandemic, necessary travelers were able to travel freely.
The vaccination requirement has been attacked by Norita Taylor, a spokesman for the trucking association Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, who calls it an example of “how superfluous government mandates may force experienced owner-operators and independent truckers out of business.”
“Another illustration of how unworkable policies will push safe drivers off the road is these restrictions,” she said.
This comes after the Biden administration enacted an emergency regulation requiring large corporations to force their staff to be vaccinated or tested weekly, despite the fact that the order is being challenged in court.